Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

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boardn10
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Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#1 Postby boardn10 » Sun Feb 20, 2011 10:35 am

I keep wondering am I placing too much stress on my joints, tendons and ligaments. I have lifted heavy for 24 years but sometimes wonder if it is natural or should I stick to light weights, walking, low impact, etc. Will I be better off in the long run? How many bodybuilders who are natural, experience serious joint problems as they get older and as a result of heavy lifting? I have always stood on the other side of the fence and believe it strengthens not only the musculature, but all of the tendons and ligaments, hence strengthening the joints. Any thoughts on this?
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Dallas
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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#2 Postby Dallas » Sun Feb 20, 2011 11:15 am

I've heard compound movements strengthen bone and joints. Not sure if true.

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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#3 Postby chewybaws » Sun Feb 20, 2011 1:05 pm

It's well known that doing it properly makes the joints stronger and more stable. Unfortunately many people prob don't do it properly in some way. Train consisently with good technique and load the weight over time, don't take any stupid jumps.

I guess genetics will play a part as well with how strong the tendons/ligaments are, and also nutrition etc. But as far as training goes just be careful - warmup/cooldown/do your stretches.

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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#4 Postby boardn10 » Sun Feb 20, 2011 2:13 pm

chewybaws wrote:It's well known that doing it properly makes the joints stronger and more stable. Unfortunately many people prob don't do it properly in some way. Train consisently with good technique and load the weight over time, don't take any stupid jumps.

I guess genetics will play a part as well with how strong the tendons/ligaments are, and also nutrition etc. But as far as training goes just be careful - warmup/cooldown/do your stretches.



I definitely agree but I am talking more about hard bodybuilding where you regularly push to new heights....not just weight training for health.
What do I do when not bodybuilding or working? Spend time with family, play guitar, write music, snowboard, roast coffee, travel, read, fight for those who are less fortunate than myself.

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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#5 Postby Fallen_Horse » Sun Feb 20, 2011 3:06 pm

Weight-bearing exercise 3x a week and moderate/intensive cardio 3x a week. Done.
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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#6 Postby chrisjs » Sun Feb 20, 2011 6:40 pm

If you're really pushing it hard all the time, I can definitely see there being some more damage compared to a couch potato. But who wants to be a couch potato?

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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#7 Postby Octopussoir » Sun Feb 20, 2011 8:59 pm

Coming from someone who has been lifting heavy for over 10 years now....

In my own opinion, i believe the muscle can get stronger, but the joints tend to breakdown with heavy use.

Right now I am having to keep both elbows in wraps. It feels much better with them, but without them the pain would be too unbearable in the gym to even attempt certain exercises(bicep curl, pullups, BB bench press).
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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#8 Postby boardn10 » Sun Feb 20, 2011 9:27 pm

Octopussoir wrote:Coming from someone who has been lifting heavy for over 10 years now....

In my own opinion, i believe the muscle can get stronger, but the joints tend to breakdown with heavy use.

Right now I am having to keep both elbows in wraps. It feels much better with them, but without them the pain would be too unbearable in the gym to even attempt certain exercises(bicep curl, pullups, BB bench press).


Sounds like you are thinking that really heavy lifting is hard on your joints, causing future problems? So, it sounds like maybe my dream of being a master class bodybuilder in his 50s and 60s, may not happen. How do guys like Clarence Bass still do it without joint pain? I know he had a hip replacement so maybe there goes that theory.
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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#9 Postby blackdove » Mon Feb 21, 2011 8:21 pm

Proper rest, nutrition, form and technique is the key. Otherwise, you open yourself to injuries and illness which is really the "damage" you refer to.

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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#10 Postby celestial » Mon Feb 21, 2011 9:48 pm

I am glad you posted this topic...
I am hoping that my new plant based protein diet will reverse some soft tissue problems and allow me to greatly diversify what I do in the off season. I've read about runners experiencing the ability to go much farther when switching to veggie diets.
I think each body is unique though, and listening to the signals is of utmost importance to be in the best state of health possible.

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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#11 Postby VeganEssentials » Tue Feb 22, 2011 12:35 am

There are many people who do keep getting better with every year and lift hard and heavy into their later years, but they're usually the ones who

A) seem to never have any major injuries, and

B) always seem to have a sensible approach to their training (no "let's max out every few weeks" type training)

It's completely possible to start training to be in exceptional shape once you hit your 40s and 50s, it's just that you'll have to be more cautious about listening to your body all the time (if it doesn't feel right, don't force anything), making sure to get the best nutrition, getting plenty of rest, etc. As we get older, all the "little things" we don't always think that much about become more and more important.

Consider that when I met Bill Kazmaier in October, he was still so massive and strong, he made me look exceptionally small at 230 lbs. He's going on 60 soon, and I don't doubt that he could still deadlift or squat 600+ lbs. any time he wanted despite his age. If you take care of yourself and keep the training sensible while still giving it 100%, you can keep making progress for a long, long time.
"A 'hardgainer' is merely someone who hasn't bothered to try enough different training methods to learn what is actually right for their own damned body." - anonymous

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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#12 Postby boardn10 » Tue Mar 22, 2011 9:37 am

Vegan, what do you consider maxing out? Are you referring to a one set max?
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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#13 Postby Deiman » Tue Mar 22, 2011 3:32 pm

I think bodybuilding can do both - build and destroy our bodies. I completely agree that genetics, adequate resting/nutrition and slow progress, avoiding max-es and so on can definitely improve health and look.

@boardn10 - according to me - weightlifting is not natural. I can't think of a situation that would have forced our ancestors, or any animal to do regular excercises with weights. More probably - just some trainning with the own bodyweight :)

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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#14 Postby VeganEssentials » Tue Mar 22, 2011 11:43 pm

boardn10 wrote:Vegan, what do you consider maxing out? Are you referring to a one set max?


I'm referring more to 1 rep maxes, something that tends to get the best of a lot of guys who are after top strength and are always wanting to test themselves. As I've found as I get closer to 40, I can't max out as often as I used to without it taking a heavy toll on my body, but 10 years ago, it was no problem to shoot for a new PR on a lift every few weeks.

After being exposed to more powerlifters this past few years, I see how many of them only max out in competition with very, very few attempts done in the gym for 100% on a set. Lots of guys will make projections for their max in a lift and only try to hit or exceed it in a contest, whereas in some gyms you can find guys trying to set a record every time they walk through the door. Slow and steady without beating yourself into the ground is the best approach for longetivity, the guys who aren't cautious are usually the ones who are out of the iron game by their early 30s and have nothing but "glory days" stories left from there on out! :D
"A 'hardgainer' is merely someone who hasn't bothered to try enough different training methods to learn what is actually right for their own damned body." - anonymous

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Re: Are we damaging our bodies with bodybuilding?

#15 Postby James » Wed Mar 23, 2011 6:46 am

I don't thinking strength training is damaging per se, although like anything it can be dangerous if not done properly.

A more serious related issue in my view is the number of young guys (teens & early 20s) I see in my gym who are using steroids despite being novice trainers.


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