Starting Strength and Dementia Starting Strength and Dementia

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Thread: Starting Strength and Dementia

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
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    Default Starting Strength and Dementia

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    Coach, you can't tease me like that on the weekly report. My family has had a very difficult journey watching my fsther's dementia progress into Alzhmrs Disease.
    Is there any way that I can support or encourage you and Dr Davies (just google his bio...wow).

    You always surprise me. Did not see this coming, but maybe I should have. Your MD contributors are always outstanding.

    Important medical trend: there is an inverse relationship between my father's ALZ Disease progression and my PR's on the Big 3. As he descends mentally my I get stronger physically.I think I take the sadness and rage out on the barbell.

    As always, incredible work you arw doing.

  2. #2
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    Jul 2007
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    Why can't you train your dad?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rippetoe View Post
    Why can't you train your dad?
    You say that like it isn't at all a challenge to get others to start lifting. Hell, I can teach anyone how to squat using your methods-that's the easy part-but actually convincing their aching, aging bodies that strength will make it better, I cannot do by showing or telling. It's always "no time", "I'm plenty active" or even "women aren't supposed to do that". My brother thinks he's better off doing things like jump rope and "pushups after running circles around a box" cos "being big would slow him down". No amount of referrals to your materials seems to spark an interest either. Pride cometh before the gains, I suppose?

  4. #4
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    Good point, Scaldrew. It was a silly suggestion. TommyGun should just let him sit there.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rippetoe View Post
    Good point, Scaldrew. It was a silly suggestion. TommyGun should just let him sit there.
    Don't be like that, Rip. Not in front of the children.

    Joking aside, I'm not saying don't let's try to help your dying relatives, especially if they're sickly. I was just pointing out that it's very hard, if not impossible, to coach, teach, or talk with someone who won't listen. In my own time, I've had people ask me for advice on how to get started and, after having referred your model and materials, I've found their initial interest waned almost immediately. So far I've only had one friend who asked stay active and on the programme despite the fact he refuses to read your book (though it's nothing personal, I promise you).

    Trainees at my gym who ask my input or casually complain about their lack of progress on the lifts also refuse to listen when I give them the simple truth: to eat and rest more. All the guys to whom I repeat this simple concept keep making excuses for themselves. "It's not easy" and "I do eat a lot" is all I hear from them. One of them has ordered the blue book, another keeps saying he will. Even the guys who allegedly have read the blue book, keep making mistakes on things like warm-up, form, or even basic linear progression. I know I'm a novice and therefore should keep my mouth shut on these issues, so I'll turn to you for your input, instead.

    Maybe the OP is crying out to you for help. Maybe he wants to coach his father, but doesn't know where to begin. How would you convince someone of old age with a condition like dementia or Alzheimer's to get started? I know the SS organisation has had success in coaching elderly trainees as well as people with health issues like cancer and diabetes (and even Alzheimer's, according to the SS weekly recap), so I'd love to know how you did it. Not only because I have had limited success with more able-bodied people and would like to know where I failed, but also because I think it could help others (certainly the OP) in dealing with possibly disinterested, maybe ignorant detrained individuals. Share your secret with us, coach.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rippetoe View Post
    Good point, Scaldrew. It was a silly suggestion. TommyGun should just let him sit there.
    I wish I did in his early stages but I was just learning the training myself.
    Now he also presents with Parkinson Disease type signs as a result of Lewy Body Dementia, so his shaking and corresponding atrophy makes it almost impossible if not just plain difficult to walk and balance correctly at 89 so I am reluctant to get him under the bar. At this point his balance is nearly gone and requires something to hold onto. My other concern is the ability for him to understand the coaching, the cognitive decline makes any type of conversation next to impossible.

    Sad but trust me on this. I think your research will focus on the early stages. I suggest the corresponding mental and physical decline of Dementia I to ALZ makes it difficult.

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