T Nation

Possible Growth Stunting

I was talking to my friend the other day and he claims that lifting heavy as to increase a max will eventually stunt one’s growth. I have heard this before but assumed it was only during puberty. I am 21 and 5’8 165-170 (yeah i am small, i am just starting out). I doubt I will get any taller, but on the off chance that I’ve got something left, is this true, is my new found love going to stunt any possible growth I have left?

this may be a stupid question, but i am concerned…
i wouldnt mind being 5’9

Tell him to prove it. If he says his doc said it, tell him to tell his doc to prove it. I have not come across any evidence that says lifting stunts growth. Google it if you like.

A paper on the study of bone growth called “The effect of prolonged physical training on the properties of long bone: a study of Wolff’s Law” has a little blurb at the end about a study done on mice where past a certain point, exercise (in the case of the study, running on a treadmill with an incline) cause bone volume and length to decrease.

lifting while young etc may actually benefit growth, it forces the bones to adapt to the load get thicker store more calcium etc. May aid growth and goes a long way to helping ward off bone disorders late in life

Phill

[quote]Sliver wrote:
A paper on the study of bone growth called “The effect of prolonged physical training on the properties of long bone: a study of Wolff’s Law” has a little blurb at the end about a study done on mice where past a certain point, exercise (in the case of the study, running on a treadmill with an incline) cause bone volume and length to decrease.[/quote]

LOL. First, this is a rat study. Second, there is a huge problem if someone relates RUNNING RATS ON A TREADMILL and the decrease of long bone growth to humans and WEIGHT LIFTING.

Running on a treadmill brings forth questions of catabolic hormones released due to extreme long duration activity on a regular basis (LIKE RUNNING VERY LONG DISTANCES WHILE STILL GROWING WHICH WOULD BE ALONG THE SAME LINES AS EXTREMELY RESTRICTIVE FOOD INTAKES WHILE STILL GROWING). It does not bring into question WEIGHT LIFTING.

For someone to even draw a link like that makes me question the person who wrote it.

Some of you should question some of the shit you read much more than you do.

[quote]Phill wrote:
lifting while young etc may actually benefit growth, it forces the bones to adapt to the load get thicker store more calcium etc. May aid growth and goes a long way to helping ward off bone disorders late in life

Phill[/quote]

it may also not aid bone growth but instead have compressive affects on your spine. did you know that you are a few fractions (i forget the exact number) of an inch smaller by the end of the day because you have been upright? then when you wake up you are the tallest you will ever be for the rest of the day.

[quote]Contach wrote:
Phill wrote:
lifting while young etc may actually benefit growth, it forces the bones to adapt to the load get thicker store more calcium etc. May aid growth and goes a long way to helping ward off bone disorders late in life

Phill

it may also not aid bone growth but instead have compressive affects on your spine. did you know that you are a few fractions (i forget the exact number) of an inch smaller by the end of the day because you have been upright? then when you wake up you are the tallest you will ever be for the rest of the day.[/quote]

Gee, the fact that you do that every single night and end up relatively right back where you started aside from reaching middle to old age where you actually do become shorter, why would you imply that lifting weights permanently causes spine compression? It doesn’t. Phil is right.

simply put… there is not one bit of evidence to show lifting weights stops growth of bones etc! think about it, how could it really? This seems to always be told to people in their teens and they usually believe it…

Well i started off when i was 13 doing weoghts and i was around 5ft 7… and im 18 now and 6ft 1 so it didnt affect me.

Besides with your age you have finished growing anyway so there is no reason to worry!

[quote]Professor X wrote:
Contach wrote:
Phill wrote:
lifting while young etc may actually benefit growth, it forces the bones to adapt to the load get thicker store more calcium etc. May aid growth and goes a long way to helping ward off bone disorders late in life

Phill

it may also not aid bone growth but instead have compressive affects on your spine. did you know that you are a few fractions (i forget the exact number) of an inch smaller by the end of the day because you have been upright? then when you wake up you are the tallest you will ever be for the rest of the day.

Gee, the fact that you do that every single night and end up relatively right back where you started aside from reaching middle to old age where you actually do become shorter, why would you imply that lifting weights permanently causes spine compression? It doesn’t. Phil is right.[/quote]

I see where you are getting at, and its a good point, but homeostasis (if you can call this that) has its limits.

14 hours of being upright (holding your upper body up), and 10 hours of rest (holding no weight) does put you back where you started.

Now, I wonder if you add 100,… 200,… 300 lbs on your back, the fact that the previous example has shown that your spine can compress and decompress should alarm you into thinking that just MAYBE if there is too much stimulus invoking compression, there won’t be enough rest time to decompress.

Time and time again it has been shown that too much of anything is bad. If height is this important to the OP he should atleast take it easy on the weight. People and research have been wrong before, I don’t think its safe for you or anyone to be advising someone on such an important matter. You don’t want to become comparable to the people in the 90’s who suggested soy being the miracle food.

It just bothers me with the confidence that you portray in your opinions/posts. Nothing is ever this straight forward and I am worried for people (who much like you attest to) follow some people’s (read: T-Nation Authors’) advice word-for-word without the ability to question. You have gained a certain amount of respect here and others may fall to trust yours, just like you warned them about trusting others.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
Sliver wrote:
A paper on the study of bone growth called “The effect of prolonged physical training on the properties of long bone: a study of Wolff’s Law” has a little blurb at the end about a study done on mice where past a certain point, exercise (in the case of the study, running on a treadmill with an incline) cause bone volume and length to decrease.

LOL. First, this is a rat study. do.[/quote]

Interesting that you like to consistently bash rat studies. Much of today’s research comes from rats. We CAN learn things from our rodent friends. It doesn’t discredit the study just to say that it was done in rats.

There should be a distinction made between internal and external validity. Internal validity is the methodology of the study and the conclusions it draws. External validity is how it relates to (usually) us, the target population.

The conclusions it made: rats running on treadmills led to decreased bone density or whatever is a matter of internal validity, and this is irrelevant to us. Thus, the study has good internal validity.

The external validity is its applicability to us. Yes, you are correct, they were rats we are humans. So maybe not very high external validity. But, we can still take their conclusion and LEARN.

What we learn from this study is the following: STUDIES SIMILAR TO THIS ONE SHOULD BE DONE IN HUMANS BECAUSE THIS ONE IN RATS SUGGESTS ITS A POSSIBILITY. So, basically, more research needs to be done.

Now, you show us studies SUGGESTING running does not cause shrinkage.

[quote]irishpowerhouse wrote:
simply put… there is not one bit of evidence to show lifting weights stops growth of bones etc! think about it, how could it really? This seems to always be told to people in their teens and they usually believe it…

Well i started off when i was 13 doing weoghts and i was around 5ft 7… and im 18 now and 6ft 1 so it didnt affect me.

Besides with your age you have finished growing anyway so there is no reason to worry![/quote]

yawn too easy…

Easy??? what does that mean?

fine.

[quote]irishpowerhouse wrote:
simply put… there is not one bit of evidence to show lifting weights stops growth of bones etc! [/quote]

so the absence of evidence is evidence suddenly? this makes no sense.

if you’re talking about evidence then um…, I could design an experiment to see if it does or doesn’t. What is your point here?
and if you’re talking about bone compression, then how does ‘thinking about it’ help you. Do you have some kind of meditation practices that you could teach us all? Maybe we too can one day pop nonsensical one-liners like these.

okay… so its a rumour. but some rumours are true. For example: “brush your teeth before you go to bed or your teeth will rot” remember than one from your wee early days?

okay, now im just laughing AT you. so now tell me this. how do u know your POTENTIAL wasnt 7ft 1? How does this prove ANYTHING. So you grew half a foot, doesn’t mean anything to us. And don’t even say “my parents are both 5’8 so it goes to figure blah blah blah”: genetics only accounts for so much variance in height.

this may be true. epiphyseal plates on AVERAGE close at around the age of 19 in men.

like a 2 cent whore.

I hate it when people say this shit.

I have grown 2.5 inches since I started lifting and I havent been lifting long.

[quote]Contach wrote:
fine.
irishpowerhouse wrote:
simply put… there is not one bit of evidence to show lifting weights stops growth of bones etc!

so the absence of evidence is evidence suddenly? this makes no sense.

[/quote]

My doctor told me that for every gram of protein I eat a baby gets addicted to crack.

I dont want babys to get addicted to crack…

I think we should all stop eating protein, just incase.


EDIT:

contach do you feel clever just because you can disagree on something?

ASS.

If this means anything my 11 year old daughter has been lifting weights for going on 5 months. Very sensible, but she does work hard. During this time she is going through a marked and noticeable growth spurt. My wife just now measured her and she has grown 2 in. give or take a bit.

[quote]n3wb wrote:
Contach wrote:
fine.
irishpowerhouse wrote:
simply put… there is not one bit of evidence to show lifting weights stops growth of bones etc!

so the absence of evidence is evidence suddenly? this makes no sense.

My doctor told me that for every gram of protein I eat a baby gets addicted to crack.

I dont want babys to get addicted to crack…

I think we should all stop eating protein, just incase.


EDIT:

contach do you feel clever just because you can disagree on something?

ASS.[/quote]

YES

[quote]Contach wrote:
Now, you show us studies SUGGESTING running does not cause shrinkage. [/quote]Are you purposely being obtuse?

The cited mouse incline treadmill study differs from the topic at hand for 2 reasons:
-mice vs humans
-incline treadmill vs lifting

Prof X already said this, how did you miss it?

The OP asked about the effects of “lifting heavy”, not running.

Your “show us studies SUGGESTING running does not cause shrinkage” completely misses the point.

We need studies of humans lifting.

Sheesh…

[quote]Contach wrote:
Now, I wonder if you add 100,… 200,… 300 lbs on your back, the fact that the previous example has shown that your spine can compress and decompress should alarm you into thinking that just MAYBE if there is too much stimulus invoking compression, there won’t be enough rest time to decompress.[/quote]

When I started squatting in 1985 I was 5’9 (seventeen years old). Now I’m slightly taller that 5’9. I’ve been squatting on a weekly basis for twenty-two years now and I’m slightly taller than when I began.

Perhaps I’m an exception to the rule, I really don’t know. I DO know that I have not suffered from any permanent shrinking that you’re hypothesizing about.

I dont see a bunch of midgets running around from bailing hay, hammering heave objects, giving each other piggy back rides, wrestling, and playing football.