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June 29, 1970

Risks of Weight Lifting

Author Affiliations

San Francisco

JAMA. 1970;212(13):2267. doi:10.1001/jama.1970.03170260063024

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To the Editor.—  I wish to add a few comments to those already made regarding the question (211:2163, 1970) whether or not there were any harmful effects from weight lifting. The answers given seemed to indicate that weight lifting was indeed quite good. The only precautions put forth were those of musculoskeletal difficulties arising from improper techniques or accidents. They seemed to gloss over a 160/100 mm Hg blood pressure as being insignificant.As a former weight lifter and as a specialist in cardiovascular disease, I would like to note a few other possible dangers that may arise in a given individual.First of all, a weight lifter should learn to breathe properly. He should be instructed never to close his glottis and strain down after taking a deep breath. This would produce a Valsalva maneuver which might result in syncope. Also, this maneuver could result in rupturing of