no brain, no gain beats no pain, no gain

Everyone in the somewhat civilzed world has heard the mantra “no pain, no gain” for decades.

Many of us, myself included, have taken that approach and often paid for it later.

Am I saying we shouldn’t push super hard in our training?

No, not at all!

We should attack our training with focused effort but not in a reckless way.

I began coaching people in martial arts in 1969.

I also trained soldiers in IED’s,landmines, demolitions,and other dangerous but necessary skills during my military years, as a Squad Leader.

For about the last 18 years I have been coaching people in strength & fitness.

One of the many things I learned about coaching people in all of those things was you can’t rush your way to solid progress.

You must establish good basics first then progressively move forward.

Here’s a few examples from each of the above areas:

In martial arts, don’t try to teach someone a spinning back kick before they can even do a basic back kick.

Don’t rush the process no matter how badly they want to learn the “fancy” stuff.

In the military when setting up demolitions, take the time to insure that all the firing systems are in place and double-checked.

When disarming landmines, be meticulous. You’ll only ever make one mistake.

In strength & fitness, don’t let anyone attempt real heavy squats if they cannot already squat a respectable weight below parallel.

Some people might think all these things are common sense.

Common sense is in very short supply overall.

People let their egos get in the way of their progress.

Either they learn horrible technique or they get injured.

Torn tendons and other injuries can derail your training for a long time.

Poor technique will punish you in the end.

It only takes one bad lift under a heavy load to end your lifting days altogether.

So work hard and smart.

Work with an experienced coach when ever you can.

Published by ironcave1

I was the owner of the Cave, a strength-based, veteran-owned, unconventional coaching facility, which closed on May 31, 2022 after almost 12 years. My full focus is now on bringing our steelclub and mace training called Mace Fit out to the public. Follow us at and @2slingsteel.

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