Fear of getting under the bar will derail your progress

I always have to chuckle when I hear someone, usually a young man, tell me he is not afraid of anything.
Right away I know two things about him

  • he’s never been in a dangerous situation
  • he’s lying

There is a reason for fear, just like there is for pain. They warn you of potentially deadly situations. I heard fear described once as organic (no , I don’t mean like food), it is “hardwired” into us for our own protection. Pay attention to it, it might save your life.

Never confuse fear with panic. Panic is uncontrollable fear; it serves no useful purpose.

Getting under a heavy barbell can generate fear. Feeling that is not necessarily bad, but you still have to do the lift.

If it makes you too scared to get under the bar, then you are messing up.

Right now think of the heaviest types  lifts you do. Granted you can get hurt on a deadlift, but not usually from the barbell falling on you.

The bench press and back squat both have the potential to injure or kill you if you are careless.


There are ways to minimize the risk, like having excellent technique,  very experienced spotters, safety bars, etc.

Can it still be very intimidating, even then?

You bet! You should just go ahead a make the lift any way.

Don’t be paralyzed by fear.

I was at a Strongman event a couple of years ago and watched a fairly young competitor load a stone weight over 400 LB.

If he fell with it, he could have gotten wrecked. If he was fearful at all, he didn’t show it; he just attacked the lift.

Olympic lifts  can be hazardous, and they require absolute concentration.

They cannot be spotted and the lifter catches the bar, most commonly, in a squat.


Yes, dangerous lifts can be done safely, and yes you might be scared; but do the lift anyhow!
You might get more than a great lift, you might also become mentally tougher.

Published by ironcave1

I am the owner of the Cave, a strength-based, veteran-owned, unconventional coaching facility. Our training is old school style, and it gets results!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: