Bauer, G., Carson, G., Tziallas, M., Westcott, W., & Faigenbaum, A. (1999). One repetition maximum strength testing in 5 to 11 year old children. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 31(5), Supplement abstract 223.

1 RM testing in children has been unpopular because of the concern that maximum loads might cause injury to immature skeletons. In this study, children (M = 32; F = 11) were tested for maximal strength on a child-size chest press and leg extension machines. All Ss were untrained and had no experience with strength training.

All Ss participated in an introductory lesson to learn proper exercise technique and participate in a low volume strength training session. The testing session consisted of 10-min aerobic and stretching exercise, followed by a specific warm-up including three progressively loaded submaximal sets on the testing exercises.

The testing did not produce any injuries. The testing was well tolerated by all Ss.

Implication. Supervised strength testing is safe for children when performed after a well designed warm-up of general aerobic and stretching, and activity specific exercises.

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