Starting Strength Weekly Report

April 02, 2018

Training Log
  • Cody Teer uses motivation and a change to Old Man Texas Method-style programming to push a lifter to new PRs in A Savage’s Motive.
Starting Strength Channel
From the Coaches

In the Trenches

brent carter lectures on valsalva maneuver
Starting Strength Seminar Staff Coach Bent Carter discusses the Valsalva Maneuver before practical sessions on the platform during the Starting Strength Seminar. [photo courtesy of Nick Delgadillo]

Best of the Week

Frequent Injuries

I started my barbell program in 2011, mostly to strengthen my knees that weren't responding enough to physical therapy. I have had a lot of success, and competed in 3 meets in the last 4 years. I have had a lot of minor injuries in the past (back, knees, calf, wrist). Usually seeing a therapeutic masseuse can get things worked out, and I'm back on track to lifting heavy in a few weeks. Lately though, I'm getting more injuries and in general just feeling a lot more pain outside of the gym. Lots of knots, pulled muscles, feeling achy all over. I've hurt my back a few times stretching during a warmup or cooldown. It makes me hesitant to push for gains, worried that I'll injure myself again. I stretch after every workout, and sometimes on rest days. I ice my knees, eat bananas and avocados, and recently started taking glucosamine chondroitin daily. What more should I be doing, or what shouldn't I be doing? My lifting total is only 62 lbs away from qualifying for USAPL Nationals, and I want to get back on track so that I can qualify for 2019 in Chicago.

Mark Rippetoe

Who taught you the lifts? Who is your coach now? Do you train by yourself? I see several form problems, and these are the common reason for repetitive injuries. But stop stretching immediately. You've already figured out why.


My husband and I lift together. We learned the lifts from the books and website. We don't have a coach. When I don't stretch, I feel awful the next day. I feel tight and have a hard time moving around. I would love to hear how I can correct my form.

Mark Rippetoe

But when you stretch, you hurt yourself. You'll probably need to hire a coach to correct your form.

Espen Lund

I'm not saying everyone needs to stretch, but I was under the impression it can be beneficial for some very inflexible individuals, and a waste of time for others. The reason I asked was because I was not aware that it could aggravate injuries.

Will Morris

Stretching is a complete waste of time for most people. Those who train generally do not need to stretch because the training itself produces the requisite mobility needed. Stretching can most certainly aggravate injuries, which is why static stretching is going the way of the dinosaur in the physical therapy world.


Stretching can muddy position sense too. This is one reason why order of exercises can be important in some individuals, eg. squatting or deadlifting after heavy benching in those with excess flexibility.

Best of the Forum

7 hours, 7 weeks later
Will Morris

7 weeks ago, I had a 7 hour right elbow reconstruction. Using a linearly progressive barbell rehabilitation protocol, I was able to bench press 300# for a paused rep single at a bodyweight of 163#.

The even better news, I am cleared for 1-pound isotonic dumbbell resistance training beginning next week.

Mark Rippetoe

Great news Will! The 300 bench will enable the 1-pound dumbbell training to progress a lot faster!

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