Teen Body Building for Older Teens

Elvis Elvis

The following information covers some guidelines for Teen body building in the post puberty period. This is the 15 years and up age group for girls and 16 years and up for boys.

Do not start with formal weight training unless there has been a period of introductory training focusing on basic all round body development.

Professional assessment should be sought to determine the ability, maturity and readyness to start post puberty teen body building.

Only then should consideration be given to a formalised weight training programme.

But I would still advise a gently, gently approach to teen body building.

Correct lifting technique is so important with teenagers. While the same same applies to adults, there is greater emphasis on young bodies because of the potential long term damage.

I cannot emphasise this enough. There is a potential to inflict permanent damage to a young growing body.

So be careful.

Don’t limit yourself by refusing to learn the details about Teen Body Building. The more you know, the easier it will be to focus on what’s important.

Professional advice is not replaceable but read all you can on correct technique. Hire, buy, borrow and beg for any body building videos. Particularly, any information related to young adults.

Books and videos are not going to substitute a professional trainer. However, there is a lot of information to be learnt from these sources.

Videos can teach a lot more about lifting weights that books cannot. You can view the correct technique from go to wo of any weight training exercise.

Formal teen body building should actually start without lifting any weights.

Teen Body Building for Older Teens

Not lifting any weights?

Form and technique is important to prevent injuries. It is difficult to learn technique when grunting and groaning trying to lift heavy barbells.

So leave the weight at home…

…so to speak.

Use a bar with no weight…

or very light weights!

But here’s the tip.

Use large timber disks weighing a couple of pounds at each end of the barbell.

Large disks will provide a small amount of training weight but more importantly…

…it raises the bar off the ground by several inches. Lifting the bar higher helps to take the strain off the lower back when moving the bar from the floor.

A bar with little weight gives opportunity to learn correct lifting technique. Focus the first few months of the programme on learning the right way to lift weights.

In my years of training young athletes, I have seen may examples of well meaning parents causing unnecessary grief to teens. Problems such as back problems due to pushing developing bodies too hard!

A suggested teen body building programme might include the following exercises. Over a period of four to six weeks, this routine should be completed twice per week.

Leave at least two days between each body building session for sufficient recovery.

Session 1

Barbell Clean Barbell Bench Press Overhand Triceps Pushdown Leg Extensions Crunch’s

Session 2

Flys Clean and Press Barbell bent over rowing Biceps Curl Hamstring Curls Leg Press Twisting situps

Perform three sets of 10 repetitions for each exercise. Don’t be too rigid with recovery times. A minimum of one minute rest time is recommended but allow longer if fatigue is setting in.

Fatigue will inhibit the practice of good technique. It is important that muscles are kept reasonably fresh to maintain correct lifting.

This is the most important issue to focus on for young teens…

Good Technique!!!

Once proper form is maintained without thinking, higher loads can be gradually introduced.

A suggestion is to separate the two weight training sessions with an endurance circuit using body weight exercises.

A suggested session might look like this.

1. Suicide. ( 5m – 10m – 15m) Run the stated distance up and back then move to the next distance until the completion of the 15m run. Rest for one minute and repeat the series.

2. Pushups.

3. Squat Thrusts.

4. Vertical Jump

5. Situps.

Repeat this circuit ten times and vary the repetitions in the following order. First time through all exercises (except the suicide) do 10 reps. Repeat the circuit with 9 reps, then 8 and so on. Work down to 1 rep and then stop.

Measure the time taken to complete the 10 sets and aim to improve the time on a weekly basis.

Intermediate Training

Provided good lifting technique has been mastered it is time to introduce a formal weight training session.

Try the following suggested programme.

Session 1 (Chest, triceps, legs and abs)

Dumbell Bench press
Leg Press
Side Situps

Session 2 (Chest, back and legs)

Lat Pull Downs
Leg Extensions

Session 3 (Shoulders, biceps, legs and abs)

Shoulder Press
Dumbell Bicep Curls
Hamstring Curls
Ab leg raises

Prior to starting these body building sessions, determine the weight required to complete ten repetitions of each exercise. The following routine can then be attempted.

Week Sets Reps
1 3 8
2 3 9
3 3 10
4 Recovery 10
5 3 10
6 3 10

At the end of week 6 increase the barbell exercises by 10 pounds (5kg) and dumbell exercises by 5 pounds (2.5kg). Then continue up to week 12.

Week Sets Reps
7 3 8
8 3 9
9 3 10
10 Recovery 10
11 3 10
12 4 10
13 5 10

In the recovery weeks reduce the amount of weight by 50%.

Once completed, the teen body builder is probably ready to progress to advanced training.

…and please note…


Teach the teen the right way to lift and they will have an injury free and fit life.