Training Around Pain

Sometimes, whether it's self-induced or just life-induced, we get aches and pain that manifest in the weight room. Whether it’s a sore knee, a bum shoulder or something else, pains happen and are a part of life. However, just because we have pain doesn’t mean we should just give up on training. Instead, when it's appropriate, we should find ways to train around pain. This is why it's important to learn new movements when you can, not because you will always use them, but because at times they might be your only option. For example, I am a big time free weight lifter, but get some residual knee pain from an old surgery I had. In the past, I would just skip legs that day and hope it would get better. However, I finally overcame my negative bias towards machines and then next thing you know, I found a modified trap bar deadlift that I could do without any pain at all. Why? Well it's hard to say for sure, but probably had a lot to do with the modification of torque around my knee due to my center of mass allowing me to sit back further in the machine. The moral of the story is, don’t be afraid to try new movements, exercises and machines. At some point the exercise you deemed useless might be the one exercise you can do without pain and becomes your saving grace.