T Nation

Strict Form vs Just Lifting


I am not some expert but I have read so much about strict form when lifting which makes me truly ask the question (I am well aware bad form and technique causes injury and is senseless)"Is there really a big difference in building strength and size if one just lifts (not paying much attention to strict forum and details)?". Again, what I am asking is if someone went and just did a deadlift or bench and paid no attention to everything being in perfect proportion (every detail ppl read and advise about) will there be the same result after all is done? Just something I ask myself. I know EVERYONE has their opinion on lifting but taking a step back from the mainstream views of lifting.

Just asking the question to see what other think. Thanks

"Pain is temporary, Pride is forever"


We would have many less lifters around and the gym would be less crowded. Hey, I am in favor...

Seriously pain is not just temporary and pride is never forever.


Why does it have to be one or the other?


When you say just lifting, I'm assuming you're talking about cheating. If so, then I'm with JohnnyTang wondering why not both? Lifting with strict form is good obviously, but if I can get a few more reps out at heavier weights by cheating then I'm going to cheat. Especially in movements like rows.


There's a difference between performing a lift with a little bit of body english, not doing complete range of motion, or other things that are not considered "picture perfect form," and lifting in a way that could cause injury. A bench press isn't incorrect just because someone doesn't fully extend their arms each rep. It is incorrect if you're benching with your feet up in the air, your muscles loose, and you're wobbling all over the place.

You know who I see bitching about correct form the most? Small people. I can't count how many times I've seen someone write something about how awful some huge guys form was in the gym, and how he doesn't know how the guy got as big as he did lifting like an idiot. Maybe the big guy knows something you don't.


how about using it as a form of progression, ie:

week 1: 225 with sloppy form

week 3: 225 with strict form

or do all but your heaviest sets with super strict form. then you get the benefits from both


I have found that the heavier you lift, the more important form is to prevent injury. Elbows and shoulders on the bench, back and hips on squat.


Since this is strength sports, after all, Im going to assume that those posting here are going to be competing in some sort of strength sport. Novel idea lately, I know.

Anyways, if your goal is to compete and succeed in strength sports, then you would be best off practicing and perfecting the technique for the particular action you will be performing.


When my brother was teaching me how to play guitar he told me to focus on having my chording arm at 90 degrees to the fret board. I tried this for a while and while it never got any easier to do, I found that I was able to finger the strings more accurately when I focused on it. Over time I became less important to do because I became better at chording and now my arm position isn't as important.

Lifting is the same way. When you start, focus on strict form because it's a lot easier to learn how to perform the movement correctly when your body is lined-up. As you mature the form becomes less important because you've learned the movement patterns correctly and you produce them at will.

Breaking form during training is important for those who compete in aggressive or ballistic sports because it's extremely difficult to have perfect form with hitting others or making a play.


u ain't gonna lift much weight on a Snatch or Clean & Jerk with poor form.




It can be both. I was seperating them because I have heard and read many times always about strict form. I believe both can be used. When I lift my first goal is to get the lift done with desired weight and reps but less forcus on strict form.

What I am talking about it is not thinking about the form but just the lift. What come natural. It may be the perfect form or may be less perfect.


when I'm about to go as heavy as possible I find focusing on forms helps me a hell of a lot more than focusing on moving the weight.

Even look at the best lifters, coaches and training partners. Repeating technique mantra's takes the focus off the weight and puts the importance on movement.

If you are training to make your chest stronger or bigger and you train with bad technique then your results will plataeu quicker because you end up training either the wrong muscles or wrong movements.


Im pretty sure there isnt any real meaningful discussion that can come of this thread that hasnt already taken place 100 times before on other various parts of this site, so Im going to go ahead and hijack.

Has anyone else noticed that, instead of this being a forum for strength sports enthusiasts (read: PL, Strongman, Highland Games, Olympic lifting, etc) and even those interested in Sport Specific strength and conditioning, its kind of become a hangout for people who just started lifting, dont know and dont care to know anything about the previously mentioned areas, and have no plans of competing in anything?




Here's my 2 cents. When I practice lifts I compete in, I use strict form. This is due to:

1: there being a standard on which the lifts are judged and

2: generally speaking, strict form allows you to move more weight more easily based on the mechanics of the movement. i.e. shortening the lever required to move the weight.

On assistance work like rows, curls, presses etc I'm less likely to be quite so particular.


So this site is just for ppl. who are interested in competing and thats it? Is this how it works on this site? You are a tool.


No, this portion of the site is for STRENGTH SPORTS. You know, primarily focused at increasing strength. The obvious strength sports are PL, OL and Strongman.

Maybe I should join an NFL forum and tell them that tactics and shit don't matter, all you have to do is run with the ball?


A few things...
This site is home to many tools Stronghold is not one of them.

Unlike some of the other forums, we don't really have to deal with "posers" (everyone is a "bodybuilder" or mma fighter, or whatever, but no one in their right mind would claim to be the oh-so-glamorous powerlifter) but lately it seems that the weekend warrior types have been throwing around their opinions despite not knowing anything about actual competitive strength sports.

There was just a thread about a 148er with an awesome arch. Most of the thread consisted of questions like "why would you bench with the biggest arch you could possibly get in a bench comp?" and "how is that fair? he only has to move the bar 7 or 8 inches". Or, people with no equipped powerlifting experience start threads about how stupid it is. Stuff like that gets annoying. Very fast.


This forum is called strength SPORTS, asshat. Of course its for those interested in competing.

Im not a tool, youre just an idiot.