On Strength

I am a strong person. I lift in an attempt to become a stronger person.

My primary observation about Strength is how often is is useless.

I am a person who has a job that requires Strength - often when people are ill, they attempt to harm themselves or other people, and it is my job to keep the situation safe.

Even in this situation Strength is as much as a drawback as an advantage. It helps to be able to exert more force when opposed by someone, and to have the muscle endurance to avoid becoming fatigued against someone's struggles, but it comes with substantial risk also. I am responsible for the safety of all those involved, and cannot exert too much force or I will hurt or kill the person instead of keeping them from hurting themselves. Of all of the techniques we are taught to use to restrain people, none require being stronger then the person you're restraining.

As far as how strength applies to daily life - How many times this last week have you been asked to do something requiring more strength then you possessed. Hell, I've recently moved and even counting everything I've brought over here, smart packing and assistance of friends has obviated the need for needing extra-strength.


  1. I can't think of any time in the last week where my strength has mattered in the least. Either I can do it, or it's pretty heavy so I have to use leverage instead of just muscling it, or I call for some help and it gets done anyways. Very few things that you could want to move in your daily life are unmoveable by three or so people.

  2. I'm work on an outdoor play right now and damn and stage lights heavy.

  3. A very interesting question, which I think depends your circumstances. I find I get called on to use brute strength on a rather frequent basis. For the record, I'm definitely no Stallone or Schwarzenegger, but I do exercise regularly (including strength training), and without that, I'm not sure how I would do a lot of stuff that comes up in my daily life. For me the question perhaps isn't how often I'm asked to perform a task beyond the strength I have (never), but rather, how often I'm asked to perform a task which I couldn't perform without injury if I weren't as strong as I am (at least once per week). Framed that way, I find strength a very useful asset.

  4. I introduced a guy to strength training a few years ago. He said he didn't want to get too big or strong. And I said, For what?

    I worked in a special ed classroom where the students became violent on a routine basis. I found possessing inordinate mass and strength compared to them actually made me better able to calibrate application of force than the willowy coworkers who had to use every ounce of muscle to deal with a fracas. Around the district if anybody every got hurt by a violent student, or caused an injury, it was almost always the weaker staff.


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