Don’t Believe The Myth That Weightlifting Will Slow You Down

Many older physical trainers, and even those younger ones who were proteges of the older men, will tell the trainee that there is an inverse correlation between strength and speed—that being too big and muscular will slow down an athlete (for whatever reason, I have found that this is most prevalent amongst traditional martial artists). The usual reason given is that the increased mass is simply a “dead weight”, while those with a little bit more knowledge will explain that lifting will develop “slow twitch” muscles over the “Fast twitch” muscles needed for sprinting, jumping, punching, and kicking.

I am here to tell you that the “common wisdom” is completely wrong-when done properly, weightlifting will not impede your speed, and will in fact enhance your speed and explosiveness!


Perhaps you’ve heard of this man?


That is of course Jamaica’s Usain Bolt, the fastest man in the world, and holder of multiple Olympic records. Also worth noting is that in an interview, Mr. Bolt revealed that he squats 400 pounds, and at least partially attributes his nigh inhuman speed to his training regimen. And he’s not the only speed athlete who this can be said of-look at any Olympic class sprinter, they are all quite muscular fellows.


Similarly, other athletic disciplines (that’s “athletics” in the specific rather than general sense, I’m using the European term for what my countrymen call “track and field”) have claimed to utilize weightlifting in their training, such as the long jump and the hurdles. Or, you can take my word for it: at my best I had a one rep max squat of 320 pounds, and had a 38 inch vertical leap (I am judging this by my ability to perform a standing jump over 2nd-highest position hurdles, which are measured at 38 inches).

In fact, many world-level athletes of all disciplines are utilizing Olympic style weightlifting to develop speed and power.

Anyway you slice it, compound weight training is a fantastic supplement to all athletes, even those who seemingly don’t need that raw brute strength.

The Science

As I elaborated in this article, as well as in the free PDF I offer to subscribers to my website (the subscription sign-up is on the front page)  there’s more than one type of way to be athletic. More accurately, there are three, speaking purely in terms of muscular and/or nervous system function, so this does not include hand-to-eye coordination or other skills related to team sports. These three things can, loosely, correlate to the three types of muscle fibers-Red—or slow—Oxidative, Fast Glycolytic-or White-, and Fast Oxidative. Rather than rehash an article that I’ve already written, we will focus on the white muscle, the fast glycolytic. This is the type of muscle you want to be training for if you want to develop sprinting speed or a high vertical leap.

Or, to put this into terms of Newton’s second law of motion, Acceleration=Force/Mass, ie: the amount of muscular force you can exert, divided by your body weight=how fast you can accelerate. And yes, I am aware that there’s probably a more mathematically accurate way of putting this.

Which Exercises To Do?

It is at this point that you’re probably asking which exercises you should train to develop those physical skills you desire. If you read my articles regularly, you will know what I am likely to say-compound free weight lifting!

In fact, I’ll go out on a limb and say if you don’t know which exercise you should do to develop a certain physical trait, you should always default to a compound lift unless you receive some further information that says otherwise. Training for speed or vertical leap is no exception to this rule.

If you are looking for sheer running speed and leaping ability, the power lifts that hit the lower body are most effective: deep “Ass to grass” squats, deadlifts, and the clean and jerk are used by professional athletes to great effect.


Similarly, if you want the ability to throw a ball or punch harder, upper body compound lifts are the key: bench presses, overhead presses and, yes, the clean and jerk, will see you through.


So for those of you who are afraid that your athletic performance will be somehow impeded by heavy weightlifting, nothing could be further from the truth.

Read More: Improve Your Weightlifting With A Video Camera

146 thoughts on “Don’t Believe The Myth That Weightlifting Will Slow You Down”

    1. to answer that question yes it is. they only have a red ROK shirt on sale right now though according to the email I got from Roosh.

  1. I have been trying to recover from a back injury for a year+, and all my compound lifts are seriously impeded. Even standard bench presses are impacted- I never would have realized how much that particular exercise depended on lower back and abdominal stability before I lost mine! Any guys with similar experiences have suggestions for a recovery regimen that will help me preserve my gains while healing?

    1. In my opinion, you will not be able to preserve your gains.
      But don’t worry about that. You can begin gaining in other ways. I seriously injured my back and have never been able to compound lift again. But I got into calisthenics and continued to increase my strength and improve my physique.
      What you will need is a good physio who specialises in rebuilding the fine muscles in your back that are responsible for core stability. This process will take months.
      Once you get through this process you can perhaps begin kettlebell lifts which are similar to Olympic lifts but with the lower weight the risk of injury is reduced. Asymmetric lifts are best in my opinion, both for your back and for your progress.

        1. Yes indeed. Its the voice of hard experience. But you will find other things that you will love, perhaps more than lifting.
          The main thing is that you are working hard to recover. That makes you different from 99% of people, in my opinion.

      1. I find that post injury I tend to do things like kettlebell or lighter compound lifts in a way that winds up (incidentally and Moynihan purposefully) to be more geared towards aesthetics. I will most likely never DL over 500 pounds again and I am sure I’ll ever squat over 300 but I am starting to lean out More since my weights are lighter and rep ranges higher

      2. “You can begin gaining in other ways”
        “What you will need is a good physio”
        “Once you get through this process you can perhaps begin kettlebell lifts”
        “Asymmetric lifts are best in my opinion”
        Solid advice.

    2. What injury. I am recovering now. I am actually making the surgery decision while I speak. My numbers are all off but I’m still working out through the pain. The only difference is that I have replaced back squats with goblet squats

        1. 5 herniated discs one of which went backwards to the nerve itself

        2. HOLY SHIT!
          Sorry to hear this….Is this a spontaneous or cumulative injury?
          Are you going for the vertebrae fusion?

        3. Hard to say if spontaneous or cumulative. It happened a year ago and I’ve been pushing though. Not sure if I’ll get the fusion. My thinking is always to avoid surgery if possible even if it means fighting through some pain

        4. Amen to that. People are way too casual about surgery these days.
          I know a guy who had a couple vertebrae fused. Says the recovery was hell, but now he feels better than ever.
          I tell ya – backs and knees just weren’t designed for the long haul.

        5. Yeah I go between good days and bad days now. But I’m not convinced I need surgery. Spines are meant to be flexible. Fusing them with metal isn’t soemthing that should be taken lightly.

      1. 2 slipped discs. They keep re-slipping.
        Brother, don’t go for the surgery. Once you do it, it narrows your options for future treatment/management, kills your range of motion, and requires you to be under a doctor’s care forever… with no guarantees that anything else will improve.

        1. 5 here and one h(at L2 has gone backwards into canal)
          I’ve def avoided surgery. I am relatively pain free now and back in the gym. Feeling good but always a worry.
          But yes surgery is always absolutenlast resort

      2. After careful SWOT analysis of the proposed benefits of surgery, I think that unsupervised pain management with street heroin is a safer, healthier option.
        Not kidding.

        1. In general I agree. With the exception of simply being unable to walk I would avoid. I found a great chiro. I don’t use pain meds except Motrin. The problem is the times when it hits and my whole left side curling around my leg to the top of my foot is in agony 24/7 for days on end. That is the worst time to make decisions

        2. Btw I did do epidural cortisone which helped though of course temp help. That wasn’t so bad

        3. I haven’t done it yet– mostly because I have been avoiding doctors. I have been using TENS units as a stopgap. They don’t really heal anything, but they help with the pain and muscle spasms. I recommend trying it.
          Treat them as disposable. Just run the heck out of them until they burn up, then replace. It is kind of a suicide mission for those things for a disc injury…

        4. I know the story. The cortisone epidorual is basically just an anti-inflammatory delivered directly to the spine. I’ve had very good luck with it though I totally understand trepidation. I am lifting fairly heavy for an injured guy. I could probably put a raw score up around 700 right now. The mix of epidural and a very good chiro has done me well. That said, if you ask me in 3 months my story might be totally different

      3. I didn’t plan on commenting this much but I can’t avoid it when I see this:
        “I’m still working out through the pain”
        Working through pain is one of the worst ideas one could have, especially when joints are involved.
        Working AROUND pain is the way to go.
        Just my 2c.

        1. Depends on the pain. I am currently pain free from disc/nerve issues and have been for about 3 weeks (yay me!) and before that there was about 2-3 weeks in which I considered that pain “livable but annoying”
          I have been in the gym 6 days a week for the last 2 straight weeks doing 2 3-day splits with loads of volume even if the weights are a lot lighter than I would have done pre injury. The pain I am dealing with now is EXCELLENT pain…it is the pain of DOMS and just being back in the gym and at the bar in a serious way since early/mid summer. That is the pain I am working through.
          As for working around pain, yes. For instance, as I mentioned, back squats are pretty much permanently off my list. Further, where my deadlift used to go 465x3x3 for a good work out, my weights have dropped to 135×20, 225x5x4. I can squeeze out the reps no problem (though at this rate this is pretty much a max out for me) but the idea of ever getting the weight up near 400 again is just out of the question. Even my bench press is down under 200. I find it odd but I can do lighter weights and rep that shit forever, but heavier stuff, even at low reps, is just a bit too much. That is ok. I keep reminding myself that I have told countless people, over several decades, not to lift with their ego and now I have to listen to my own advice.
          All in all, my goals have had to change somewhat to compensate for my spine which is slightly depressing. But muscle pain from getting back in the gym…I love it. I will take that terrible 2 days after leg day john wayne walking style and the inability to scratch my back without agony any fay of the week ya know.

        2. “loads of volume even if the weights are a lot
          lighter than I would have done pre injury”
          That’s it.
          “The pain I am dealing with
          now is EXCELLENT pain…it is the pain of DOMS and just being back in
          the gym and at the bar in a serious way since early/mid summer. That is
          the pain I am working through”
          I misunderstood what you were saying as the popular notion of damaging your body as a sine qua non of serious training. Now it’s clearer and that is indeed excellent pain.
          “that terrible 2 days after leg day john wayne walking style”
          This made me laugh.

        3. Yeah, about the pain….looking back I wasn’t exactly clear. But even when my back, leg and down to my foot was on fire I was still in the gym every day doing isolation on my biceps or whatever I could as much as I could.
          I am really excited now that I am lifting again. In a nut shell I have had to switch from powerlifting to bodybuilding routine because I just can’t load the weight on my spine, even using excellent form, that I could before. As it turns out….while getting older can be mitigated, 20 years does actually take a toll on the body.
          John Wayne walking style is real. I am walking down Madison Avenue here in new York to get to my office like I am some cowboy they strapped a suit on.

    3. I would just start with low weights and gradually build up.
      I myself am still recovering from a car crash that gave my right foot a lisfranc injury, and when I eventually start lifting again, I will start with low weights and build up over time.

      1. Thanks, Larsen. Sorry to hear you are struggling through recovery mode, too. Hope you come through, soon.
        I was back in the gym to work arms and tried to deadlift just the bar (elevated up on a stack of 35’s). No dice. Like being struck by lightening.
        Looks like I am in for a long recovery…

        1. “elevated up on a stack of 35’s”
          Last thing I would be doing if I were in your situation.
          I know it’s hard and I know it makes you feel powerless but pushing through the pain is no good.
          Finding other ways to develop is.
          I would stop thinking about how much I deadlifted and I would focus on other areas of physical development.
          I would ask myself:
          “how long can I hold a plank position?”
          “can I get a proper top hold in the rings?”
          There are scores of exercises out there, running the full gamut of difficulty. It is always possible to seek new challenges that don’t hurt the body.
          It’s not the end of the world if you have to park the DL, but it is if you let your inner fire go down the toilet.

        2. You are dead right. A buddy of mine does Kung Fu, and he showed me “horse stance.” I thought holding it would be a joke, but everything from my neck to my hamstrings is getting tested– just like a compound lift.
          Thanks for the encouragement. It genuinely means a lot.

    4. Speaking from experience, sometimes is good to let go of gains and change to another kind of training: calisthenics, ring work…
      Lifting while injured is a fool’s errand and does more harm than good in the long run, even if one manages to grind through it.

  2. I appreciate the thrust of this article but I have to respectfully disagree. Based on my personal experience and the advice I have taken from professional fighters and coaches, at least in the case of Muay Thai, weightlifting will slow you down. Badly.
    The reason is that the recovery time from heavy compound lifting is too long for you to be able to train lifts and train for fighting. Much better is calisthenics. You can build significant strength with calisthenics which in my opinion makes weightlifting redundant, at least as far as fighting is concerned.

    1. Of course calisthenics can build strength, I advocate them as well. The point of this article is that strength/power correlates with speed and agility. And as I have also stated in other articles, you’ve gotta train flexibility as well.

        1. Bolt is a natural beast, true, but that doesn’t mean husband training doesn’t be apply to everyone. You’ll never be faster than than him but with the right training you will be faster than you are now

      1. Sure I understand and I have read your other articles. I just disagree with the assertion that weightlifting does not slow you down. It requires certain qualifications, that’s all.

    2. True.
      Therein lies the crux of the matter, there are many interpretations to “slowing down” when the question pops up in athletic circles.
      Slow down recovery?
      Slow down progress by impairing the training of the rest of skills?
      Physically slow down?
      All of the above?
      Then is when ballistics enter the scene.

  3. I have to ask- is the one hand over/one hand under grip for a deadlift truly necessary? I never use it (I also never tempt fate by going too crazy on that exercise).

    1. Depends. Are your forearms beast a/f? The staggered grip keeps the bar from trying to roll out of your palms, thus it gives your grip a break.
      You should try to lift overhand for as many sets as you can manage to build grip strength, then go over-under when you can’t hold onto the bar anymore.

    2. I liked to alternate it. Switch reversed hands between sets. I always felt a difference. But… I wonder if we are fetish-izing the deadlift a little bit.

    3. Try the hook grip. Put your thumbs on the bar first, and then wrap your fingers around your thumbs. It’s going to hurt but I can lift more that way than with the over under. Use chalk and wrap athletic tape around your thumbs.

        1. It’s still challenging to your grip. It’s just more effective than the over under grip at preventing bar slippage.

        2. Ehhh..
          While it has its advantages for producing more even form than mixed grip I really think the whole point of hook is that youre creating a friction point in your thumbs to stop the bar rolling rather than doing it with your forearms.
          That aside, to each his own right?
          I still stand by doing as much as you can handle with standard grip to train forearms then switching to something else to get a real back workout in.

      1. I’m gonna try this out on Wednesday . I feel like at this point my grip is holding me back from deadlifting more. my body wants to do the work but i can’t pull the weight off the floor without my grip giving out.

        1. I have an article about this in the works with some tricks of the trade. I don’t know when it will come out but this is a primer/summary: specific forearm (flexors and extensors) work.

    4. Or use lifting wrist straps. You are trying to work your body, not your grip, right?

    5. Necessary? No. my general rule of thumb is that I only use a mix grip when my rep range is 3 or less

    6. Grip becomes an eventual limiting factor in the DL for most people. The over/under grip is the usual way to circumvent this.

  4. Your vertical leap is how high you can jump. Jumping over something is not equivalent; it’s like a box jump since you lift your feet.
    I’m not trying to take away from your athletic abilities, as I remember how long it took me to squat 320, but you should know the difference. A 38 in vertical is professional athlete territory.

      1. He’s a beast but all I’m seeing is a box jump? Vertical is what they test at the NFL combine.

  5. Breaking news: FBI has cleared Hillary of criminality regarding her emails. It seems Comey is still working for the Clintons

        1. I think this might backfire on them. People will think ‘She got off again, holy shit’

        2. That’s just great news! I needed a Gamma rays tan anyways,and leukaemia is in fashion too! Bring on WW3

        3. I’m a pretty big believer in the secret Trump supporter, to the point where I wouldn’t really be shocked if he takes Pennsylvania and Michigan.

        4. I’ve heard tell that Comey can’t be ousted by Trump. Hopefully Trump has a card up his sleeve to make that happen.
          I expect that he will, since even 0bama managed to pressure BetrayUs into resigning.

        5. Whether he was a good guy or a bad, Petraeus was sacrificed, and lacked the protection someone like Clinton has
          “That is a very, very serious allegation. And I would note, Gen. Petraeus was criminally prosecuted. Right now, the Obama Pentagon is trying to strip him of one of his stars for doing what appears on the face to be much, much less than Hillary Clinton did.”
          –Ted Cruz, Fox News, Jan. 20, 2016

        6. I often think the people with the heads up on these decisions make killings on the markets

        7. You have to keep your support for Trump on the downlow to avoid being attacked by a fascist clintonista.

        8. I am going to take no pleasure in saying I told you so on Wednesday. Ok a little pleasure. But not a lot

        9. I am not saying I like it but on wednesday we will be talking about president elect clinton while the ‘bama starts looking for the pardon paperwork

        10. Sacrificed? More like “willingly took one for the (wrong) team”.
          BetrayUs is interesting as not only is he a case study in morality but his downfall happened because his “side action”-Paula Broadwell-became aggressively jealous of another woman in Betrayus’ social circle.

    1. I dunno, the bureau has a special speed-reading division. they are quite good

      1. have they been training with Tony Buzan or are we talking a database search-facility?

        1. Whatever they’re doing, they need to teach it to the State department.
          They claim it will take them 5 years to go through the 31,000 emails they have.
          If the FBI took that long, we’d be looking at ~105 years.

      2. I can’t help but wonder how much influence the DoJ had over the decision. They actually but a close friend of Podesta in charge of the DoJ oversight of the investigation. There’s actually an email where Podesta mentions this guy as having kept Podesta out of jail….

    2. More news: Trump is putting Goldman sachs in charge of the treasury – meet the new boss, same as the old boss!
      We’ve been duped!

      1. got a link. Last time I heard they had forbade their employees from voting for Trump

        1. he’s still the better option, just adjust your expectations accordingly. It’s no mystery he’s from the same caste as the rest of the political caste, but he may still be less beholden to the lobbyists and banksters. You can fire someone at the treasury after all

        2. we can only hope….Just seems like Goldman Sukks has been running our economy for a long time.

    1. That’s rough Ming. Some people just have a bad lift. At my best my natural score was probably somewhere around 1200 but I’ve never benched more than 265. My dead was a total monster and my squat respectable. Some people just have trouble with a certain lift

        1. My trainer squats more than a half ton. Not saying it is easy but I know people who can do it. World squat record was just set at 1000 pounds.

        2. That said I never could squat that much even at my best. And now? After injury, I’ll be happy if I ever get 225 again

        3. Back injuries are a bastard. I got headbutted on the right side of my lower back some time ago in Rugby. I feel it in the last reps of the finishing set. It’S a mild case but I heard horror stories about people who didnt care about health.
          My best is 308 but I don’t see much point in ego lifting 1 rep exercises. I do 3 lighter weight and blast the muscle with rapid movement

        4. Ha no but that guy is a total beast. My trainer is a 240 pound Asian with no boy fat if you can imagine the kind of muscle that takes

        5. I almost never do 1rm either. Maybe for fun but it isn’t part of a real goal oriented work out. I am a big believer in tripastic programs. So week one rep range 10-12 week 2 8-10 week 3 6-8 week 4 3-5 and then start over–hopefully with bigger weights.
          Other than that I do traditional body building 3 day splits twice a week with ranges of 12-10-8-6 with one major lift per day going 20-18-16-14-12-10-8-6-3-2-1-1-1rm but I haven’t done a serious program like that since injury

        6. He’s gonna be in a whole lotta pain when he’s hitting 55. Gymnasts are known to have joints problems after retirement.

        7. Everyone over 55 has pain. Pick your poison. People tell me I shouldn’t life weights because of pain and I tell them they shouldn’t be lazy fat asses.

        8. 1RM is good to track progress.
          To improve on lifts, I typically do 3×5,3×3, and 3×1… with my weight increasing by 20 lbs for each round.
          Haven’t plateaud on most of them yet.

        9. That is a good range. Want to work out a deadlift do the rep set I mentioned in the other comment. 20-18 etc. it will take some time and you’ll be spent after but it’s amazing for DL

        10. I know guys who go to the bar every day…not drunks but who have a few drinks after work. I also know guys who eat out all the time, who smoke or who do weekly karaoke or trivia contests. For me the gym is more than getting in shape. It is part of how I balance my soul out.

        11. In truth, you have pain when you’re young too. Issues is when you hit your 50s it bothers you more because you’re tired of it.

        12. I never thought of it this way but to be honest it makes a lot of sense. Thanks for the perspective.

      1. Absolutely true, I only started for real with lifting a year ago, but my bench press is holding me back.
        I’m only able to break 700 on my powerlifting due to my other lifts.

        1. I can’t figure it out. I’ve been doing it for years. My form is perfect. I know all the tricks. My chest is broad. I just have a weak lift.

        2. Wide grip benches make all the difference for me. Like out past the shoulders a little.

        3. I’ve heard that and I got good (for me) results. I mean it’s not that i lift terrible. About 1.5x body weight. Just compared to other lifts the bench is my weak spot

        1. well I don’t know what a Volanko is but I am pretty sure you are the most of it.

  6. Unrelated, but with a potential civil war looming, in the event Trump isn’t elected, I though it was pertinent to place this where more eyes might see it.
    Regarding today’s revelation that the FBI is done investigating Hillary’s emails: If Trump doesn’t win this election, there will be total revolution in this country. And this is not lost on the elite. The question is, do they want a civil war, or not? The vast majority of Americans will suddenly realize that the whole game is rigged (because the vast majority of Americans are voting for Trump). Dan Rather basically implied that this election was rigged, last week, in the video below. And the subtext of this putrid CNN video, is that we should just learn to deal with that, because news anchors work by “helping people accept election results”.
    (Skip forward to the 1:22 mark to listen to the startling shit that the CNN interviewer, and Dan Rather, spelled out for us here…)
    The entire MSM (except for Fox News) has bashed Trump from the get-go, while ignoring Hillary’s crimes and saying over and over that she is going to win, that she is their choice, etc. And because of the heavy-handedness of the whole affair, I am still betting on a Trump “upset” victory. Because if he doesn’t win, the after-shock will ignite the unbridled anger of at least 200 million pissed-off Americans, whose Obamacare costs have just skyrocketed, and whose jobs continue to be shipped overseas, while illegal immigrants flood the country and snatch up any remaining available work, to the point where those 200 million Americans will have nothing left to lose. And that’s very unlikely to happen, because I don’t think the oligarchy has the manpower to deal with 200 million pissed-off, well-armed Americans.
    So I still say Trump wins…but if I’m wrong, get ready for civil war. (Looks like a win/win situation. If Trump wins, revolution is thwarted. If Hillary wins, it means the oligarchs want civil war, which proves what I have suspected all along – they are suicidal.)

  7. Sounds like a one way ticket to an orthopedic surgeon or chiropractor… Exotic free lifting and max free lifting should not be recommended to 99% of people.

    1. Because 99% of people use shitty form. If you have a coach that drills form before anything else, that won’t be an issue

      1. I tend to go the other way 99% of people should be lifting, and should start a program under the guidance of a coach to ensure good form.

  8. Got to disagree partly here. Getting bigger will slow you down as a generality unless you have a VERY specific training regime, likewise your endurance will suffer unless you specifically account for this.

  9. Big will equate to slow when aesthetics and size are the primary focus. I’d imagine a very small percentage of men train for athletic strength or speed, most are simply looking to get as big as possible, as fast as possible.. (at least that is what I see at the gym these days)

  10. Only if one properly trains for both strength and flexibility. Lots don’t go to the gym for the latter.

  11. typical for bike training -> strength training in the off-season, combined with long slow rides…
    for speed

  12. Another great article Larsen. That pic of the frontsquat is awesome. It is always an out of shape person who tells me that weight lifting is bad for me….every single time

  13. The people who end up slow are the ones who start with isolation rather than compound.

  14. I used to do more cardio than weightlifting, my abilities have grown since REVERSING those two items in my routine.
    That and I don’t waste time on stuff like bent over rows.

  15. It is just their way to justify sitting on their cucumber and watching TV. I enjoy weights far more as I am getting older. Other than swimming, the cardio kills my joints anymore.

    1. I shifted to the minimalist shoes for running, much easier on the knees/lower back. As well as going to more varied cardio- elliptical, rowing machine, bike etc.

      1. I would rather have my teeth pulled than go jogging. Biking is okay or taking a canoe out to the reservoir is great. I like to go hiking mostly. Any impact type stuff, and I will feel it for days.

  16. I see a lot of people make the mistake this author did. There is speed and there is speed. Bolt is not that big. Neither are most of the sprinters. 100 meter sprinters tend to be bigger than 400 and 800 meter persons and they are both usually much bigger than people who do 5ks and up.
    Now if you run long distance at any elite level you know these guys are running upwards of 16 MPH for 2 hours. I don’t know about YOU but for me 16 mph is a sprint and I can’t hold that for 2 hours much less 20 minutes.
    There is speed and there is speed. The more you weigh the more you have to drag around (within limits of course). So if one is trying to be the fastest runner they can be at long distance, I would strongly advise against trying to bulk up. This doesn’t mean NOT to strengthen what you have. I am quite strong for my size but many of my peers can out lift me and I’m ok with that. They cannot out run me.
    On a side note with martial arts, being too large will cause issues with certain forms and movements.

    1. Bolt is 6″5
      He’s big. Training and running keep him ultra lean as does his diet and coaches.

      1. being 6’5″ makes you tall, not big. Bolt is not that big at all. No one said he was lanky but I’ve seen people his height with far more muscle.

  17. “there is an inverse correlation between strength and speed”
    I guess they never paid attention to Bo Jackson or Eric Dickerson or Jerome Bettis!

  18. you still need to do a lot of skill work otherwise all that lifting doesnt do squat. Also you need to work on you base more specifically your ankles and feet.

    1. “you still need to do a lot of skill work otherwise all that lifting doesnt do squat”
      And if the lifting is getting in the way of the skill work then it’s time to cut down the time you spend with the weights.

  19. This topic deserves a lot of attention, and its presence is pervasive in martial arts circles. Appreciated that you brought it to general attention.
    However the rabbit hole goes way deep in this case. Plyometrics were developed and scientifically researched partly due to this concern but they are not for greenhorns.
    Ditto for any kind of ballistic lifting.
    While not entering in whether lifting slows down or not, two things are clear.
    First one, lifting has become a necessity for professional and semi professional atheletes if they want to excel at their sport. If it were to slow down the lifter, coaches would need to find a way around that.
    Second, lifting makes the lifter tighter. This does not mean slower per se, but performance will take a hit unless flexibility is addressed properly. This is readily apparent in contact sports.
    On a side note, sprinters do have above average developed muscles, but their impressive appearance is more due to a low body fat percentage, a natural byproduct of their training.

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