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  1. #1
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    How does rotating lifts reduce injury risk and how often should we do it?

    I never really understood this. Why does swapping out lifts reduce injury risk if you generally swap to other lifts that work the exact same movement pattern, muscles, joints etc? This makes no sense to me. Does this mean that sticking to the same group of exercises forever will greatly increase your risk of injury? How often should we be swapping out lifts? I feel like there are only so many lifts in existence so it becomes an exercise in frustration to keep finding new things to do especially with equipment limitations.

    Thanks
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    The idea is to prevent overuse injuries over time.
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    Overuse injuries are a thing, though not that likely with lifting.

    Otherwise, I'm not sure variation has much real impact on injury risk either way
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    Unregistered User MyEgoProblem's Avatar
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    How?
    You don't over use the exact same movement pattern ad neausem.
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    Registered User Animal2692's Avatar
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    This is an interesting question because I too, have wondered about this. I don't have much knowledge on this but my assumption has always been that "overuse injuries" is a cover up for flat out using bad form or bad form from too much weight or too much volume. Doesn't make much sense to just arbitrarily change exercises if there's no issues.
    Last edited by Animal2692; 03-05-2021 at 11:42 AM.
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    Originally Posted by MyEgoProblem View Post
    How?
    You don't over use the exact same movement pattern ad neausem.
    The simplest and only answer you need.
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    If you have an overuse injury from lifting there are prob other factors involved beyond whether or not you rotate lifts, including poor programming, poor form, age, mileage on joints, etc.

    There are people who've done bb BP for decades and lived to tell about it.
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    Originally Posted by BeginnerGainz View Post
    The idea is to prevent overuse injuries over time.
    Mistake in the title. How does swapping variations of lifts minimize overuse injuries?

    Originally Posted by WolfRose7 View Post
    Overuse injuries are a thing, though not that likely with lifting.

    Otherwise, I'm not sure variation has much real impact on injury risk either way
    So you’re saying this is a myth?

    Originally Posted by MyEgoProblem View Post
    How?
    You don't over use the exact same movement pattern ad neausem.
    I watched a vid from blaha who is on conjugate, which is quite similar to my setup. He gave the example that maxing out on the same lifts all the time will increase your chances of overuse and that you need to max out on different lifts each week to help with prevention. Even said lighter assistance lifts need to be rotated too to prevent overuse.

    I don’t understand it though since the variations he uses are only slight differences. Eg. Slightly altering grip width on a bench counts as a variation. Or swapping in some dumbbells, using different bars etc. it’s still the same movement pattern though working the same muscles, joints? Doesn’t make sense to me.
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    Originally Posted by Animal2692 View Post
    This is an interesting question because I too, have wondered about this. I don't have much knowledge on this but my assumption has always been that "overuse injuries" is a cover up for flat out using bad form or bad form from too much weight or too much volume. Doesn't make much sense to just arbitrarily change exercises if there's no issues.
    People don’t arbitrarily do this.

    You change an exercise when it starts feeling stale or if you start to feel something creep up.

    It’s the same ideas as a deload.

    Sometimes it’s better to do it before you need it and it’s too late.

    If you hammer dB lateral raises for 3 months and you’re now getting to the point where adding weight/reps/sets is counter productive swapping in a cable variation, an extreme rom version, or a cable upright row would be the prudent choice to avoid either just stalling out and having ****ty stimulus to your delts and avoiding an injury.

    Overuse injuries happen in everything in life if you do a movement pattern enough times in a row something is gonna break.

    Ever wiggled a piece of plastic or a rubber band until it snaps? Same concept.
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    Originally Posted by Filmbuff81 View Post
    People don’t arbitrarily do this.

    You change an exercise when it starts feeling stale or if you start to feel something creep up.

    It’s the same ideas as a deload.

    Sometimes it’s better to do it before you need it and it’s too late.

    If you hammer dB lateral raises for 3 months and you’re now getting to the point where adding weight/reps/sets is counter productive swapping in a cable variation, an extreme rom version, or a cable upright row would be the prudent choice to avoid either just stalling out and having ****ty stimulus to your delts and avoiding an injury.

    Overuse injuries happen in everything in life if you do a movement pattern enough times in a row something is gonna break.
    But aren’t you swapping to a variation of the same movement pattern, which works the same muscles, joints etc? I guess that’s where I’m getting lost
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    Originally Posted by Filmbuff81 View Post
    People don’t arbitrarily do this.

    You change an exercise when it starts feeling stale or if you start to feel something creep up.

    It’s the same ideas as a deload.

    Sometimes it’s better to do it before you need it and it’s too late.

    If you hammer dB lateral raises for 3 months and you’re now getting to the point where adding weight/reps/sets is counter productive swapping in a cable variation, an extreme rom version, or a cable upright row would be the prudent choice to avoid either just stalling out and having ****ty stimulus to your delts and avoiding an injury.

    Overuse injuries happen in everything in life if you do a movement pattern enough times in a row something is gonna break.

    Ever wiggled a piece of plastic or a rubber band until it snaps? Same concept.
    I see, makes sense.

    Now that I think about it, I better go tell my wife we need to switch it up to prevent overuse injury (not trying to be rude).
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    Originally Posted by DogletDusk View Post
    But aren’t you swapping to a variation of the same movement pattern, which works the same muscles, joints etc? I guess that’s where I’m getting lost
    Let’s use OHP as an example.

    With a barbell you’re pretty fixed in the movement.

    Swap to a seated DB Press.

    The joint angles and load will be different and you’ll move more freely.

    Sure they are the “same” movement but the stress is entirely different.

    Altering rep ranges contributes too.

    So try not to look at it strictly as a movement variation.

    It’s a variation of Multiple stressors.

    Edit:

    Current personal example

    I’m curling 3 times a week, my forearms are hurting my work and some overuse stuff I can’t work around.

    Ez bar curls were killing my forearms and elbow with pain last 2 weeks of my meso, but preacher and hammer curls were zero pain.

    So slightl alterations can make a large difference.
    Last edited by Filmbuff81; 03-05-2021 at 12:27 PM.
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    Originally Posted by DogletDusk View Post
    Mistake in the title. How does swapping variations of lifts minimize overuse injuries?



    So you’re saying this is a myth?



    I watched a vid from blaha who is on conjugate, which is quite similar to my setup. He gave the example that maxing out on the same lifts all the time will increase your chances of overuse and that you need to max out on different lifts each week to help with prevention. Even said lighter assistance lifts need to be rotated too to prevent overuse.

    I don’t understand it though since the variations he uses are only slight differences. Eg. Slightly altering grip width on a bench counts as a variation. Or swapping in some dumbbells, using different bars etc. it’s still the same movement pattern though working the same muscles, joints? Doesn’t make sense to me.
    Blahas conjugate is like getting a blind toddler to build you a working car.

    I'm not saying it's a complete myth, I'm just suggesting that injury prevention is not a primary reason for utilising exercise variation
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    Originally Posted by Filmbuff81 View Post
    Let’s use OHP as an example.

    With a barbell you’re pretty fixed in the movement.

    Swap to a seated DB Press.

    The joint angles and load will be different and you’ll move more freely.

    Sure they are the “same” movement but the stress is entirely different.

    Altering rep ranges contributes too.

    So try not to look at it strictly as a movement variation.

    It’s a variation of Multiple stressors.

    Edit:

    Current personal example

    I’m curling 3 times a week, my forearms are hurting my work and some overuse stuff I can’t work around.

    Ez bar curls were killing my forearms and elbow with pain last 2 weeks of my meso, but preacher and hammer curls were zero pain.

    So slightl alterations can make a large difference.
    That makes sense. Cheers!
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    Originally Posted by WolfRose7 View Post
    Blahas conjugate is like getting a blind toddler to build you a working car.

    I'm not saying it's a complete myth, I'm just suggesting that injury prevention is not a primary reason for utilising exercise variation
    Fair enough. Could you elaborate a bit on the first point?
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    As above, changing exercises changes the stress and movement patterns of the body.

    There's a lot more involved than just muscles and tendons. There are also ligaments in the joints, bursae (sacs of fluid in the joints), bones, and stabilizer muscles that move differently around bones when you change variations.

    Look at a detailed anatomy chart of the shoulders, for example, and watch a few vids on rotator cuff injury. You'll see how even 1 millimeter can make a difference in injury prevention, and see how small inflammation from bad form too many reps can increase to a muscle tear.

    The body is much more complex than Instagram posts show.
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    Originally Posted by ECGordyn View Post
    As above, changing exercises changes the stress and movement patterns of the body.

    There's a lot more involved than just muscles and tendons. There are also ligaments in the joints, bursae (sacs of fluid in the joints), bones, and stabilizer muscles that move differently around bones when you change variations.

    Look at a detailed anatomy chart of the shoulders, for example, and watch a few vids on rotator cuff injury. You'll see how even 1 millimeter can make a difference in injury prevention, and see how small inflammation from bad form too many reps can increase to a muscle tear.

    The body is much more complex than Instagram posts show.
    Fair enough. How often would you recommend swapping out movements? Would this also include swapping out main lifts? I do these for a single top set and would be worried about losing progress if I kept swapping them out but wouldn’t want to risk injury by keeping them in either
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    Originally Posted by DogletDusk View Post
    Fair enough. How often would you recommend swapping out movements? Would this also include swapping out main lifts? I do these for a single top set and would be worried about losing progress if I kept swapping them out but wouldn’t want to risk injury by keeping them in either
    Swap out every 4 weeks is good, of course it depends on your overall program. If you're on LP, grinding out a new 5RM on all lifts every week, then the stress is higher than if you're on DUP, managing fatigue throughout the week with heavy-light-medium or something.

    Keep your main lift once a week, just swap the variations. Choose a range of close and distant variations.
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    Originally Posted by ECGordyn View Post
    Swap out every 4 weeks is good, of course it depends on your overall program. If you're on LP, grinding out a new 5RM on all lifts every week, then the stress is higher than if you're on DUP, managing fatigue throughout the week with heavy-light-medium or something.

    Keep your main lift once a week, just swap the variations. Choose a range of close and distant variations.
    Thanks bro. Just so I understand what you’re saying, I do an U/L where I have a squat/bench/dead/ohp day. I ramp up to a top set for these 4 lifts and the rest of the session is volume work (5-15 reps) via back off sets and other variations of these movement patterns. So it’s fine to keep squat/bench/dead/ohp in forever, working to a top set, and only change the supplemental exercises for volume work?
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    Originally Posted by DogletDusk View Post
    Thanks bro. Just so I understand what you’re saying, I do an U/L where I have a squat/bench/dead/ohp day. I ramp up to a top set for these 4 lifts and the rest of the session is volume work (5-15 reps) via back off sets and other variations of these movement patterns. So it’s fine to keep squat/bench/dead/ohp in forever, working to a top set, and only change the supplemental exercises for volume work?
    Yes, fine to keep them in forever, and do backoff work as the main lift on the day of that top set, then do the variation on another day. If you start stalling on a lift then just deload it. Occasionally run a pivot block where you change up all lifts for a few weeks.

    Something like this:

    Main squat work up to top set
    Main squat backoff work
    DL variation

    Main bench
    Main bench backoff work
    OHP variation
    Horizontal pull
    Vertical pull

    Main DL
    Main DL backoff work
    Squat variation

    Main OHP
    Main OHP backoff work
    Bench variation
    Hor. pull
    Vert. pull

    Could even add bench on day 1 or day 3, or both depending on what you need
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  21. #21
    Registered User DogletDusk's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ECGordyn View Post
    Yes, fine to keep them in forever, and do backoff work as the main lift on the day of that top set, then do the variation on another day. If you start stalling on a lift then just deload it. Occasionally run a pivot block where you change up all lifts for a few weeks.

    Something like this:

    Main squat work up to top set
    Main squat backoff work
    DL variation

    Main bench
    Main bench backoff work
    OHP variation
    Horizontal pull
    Vertical pull

    Main DL
    Main DL backoff work
    Squat variation

    Main OHP
    Main OHP backoff work
    Bench variation
    Hor. pull
    Vert. pull

    Could even add bench on day 1 or day 3, or both depending on what you need
    Thank you so much man. What you wrote is exactly what I do now. I have A/B days that involve main lift A, back off A and a variation of main lift B and the other day is main lift B, back off B and variation main lift A. Thanks again!
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    Time is Muscle ECGordyn's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by DogletDusk View Post
    Thank you so much man. What you wrote is exactly what I do now. I have A/B days that involve main lift A, back off A and a variation of main lift B and the other day is main lift B, back off B and variation main lift A. Thanks again!
    One more thing: It's good to change the variations every block, for all the reasons talked about above, and to increase the stimulus from each variation. First block say you do Main DL and SLDL as variation. Next block you do Main DL and RDL. Next block Main DL and Candito DL. Fourth block you go back to Main DL and SLDL. Idea here is variety across blocks, and keeping each variation at least 2 blocks apart.
    2020 maxes
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    DogletDusk is offline
    Originally Posted by ECGordyn View Post
    One more thing: It's good to change the variations every block, for all the reasons talked about above, and to increase the stimulus from each variation. First block say you do Main DL and SLDL as variation. Next block you do Main DL and RDL. Next block Main DL and Candito DL. Fourth block you go back to Main DL and SLDL. Idea here is variety across blocks, and keeping each variation at least 2 blocks apart.
    Yep, I’ll definitely start rotating lifts like that. I don’t mind doing that actually. I was only concerned because I thought you had to rotate out main lifts too and I feared I’d lose progress/neuro efficiency doing that. Thank you for your help and time, really.
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