Strength ratios for injury avoidance Strength ratios for injury avoidance

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Thread: Strength ratios for injury avoidance

  1. #1
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    Default Strength ratios for injury avoidance

    My reading tells me that disproportionate strength is the root cause of most musculo-skeletal injuries. Iíve had my share of injuries and want to avoid them in the future.
    I want to know if there is a weight ratio for a given pair of exercises within which the risk of musculo-skeletal injury is unlikely. A hypothetical example: the safe ratio between bench press weight and shoulder press weight is 1.25 - 2.5x; and outside that range injury becomes increasingly likely and programmatic adjustment is indicated.

    Question: What would a safe ratio be for Bench/Shoulder press? What other exercise parings would be relevant and what would their ratios be?

    Background: Iím recovering from a moderate shoulder tear which occurred while bench pressing, and want to take measures to avoid such injuries in the future. Iím 61, not training for a mastersí event in any sport, aiming towards maximizing strength, mobility, and appearance.

  2. #2
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    What are your bench/press numbers now?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bestafter60 View Post
    My reading tells me that disproportionate strength is the root cause of most musculo-skeletal injuries.
    ...
    Iím 61, not training for a mastersí event in any sport, aiming towards maximizing strength, mobility, and appearance.
    In my experience, it's an overall lack of strength that is the root cause of most injuries, especially as people age. Unless you're isolating some bodyparts and ignoring others, say, doing leg extensions as your only leg exercise, it's not likely to be a real issue.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rippetoe View Post
    What are your bench/press numbers now?
    My pre-injury 5RMs were bench 185, press 115, so 1.6 to 1. Pretty sure that would fall within a safe ratio. I'm looking for guidance on these ratios to make sure I keep in bounds and avoid setting myself up for injuries - shoulder, back, wherever. If there was a safe envelope of ratios I could tell, for example, that my Deadlift was outrunning my squat to a point where injury was becoming likely, and adjust my program accordingly. Conversely, if I started feeling low back pain, I could refer to the ratio of relevant weights I'm lifting, and adjust to avoid exacerbating matters. I think there's a useful concept here, do you?

  5. #5
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    Useful, but terribly difficult to quantify beyond what I've already done in the books.

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