One of the guys I know is a skinny, small kid. We were talking about strength training the other night and he said his High School coach told him he'll never get big, so he shouldn't bother lifting. At best, he was told, he can tone up a bit and get more endurance but he can't get strong.
That drives me completely nuts.
He's like 17. He's got at least another growth spurt in him. He seems willing to put in the effort if he knows what to do. I know from training with him he'll do whatever you tell him until you tell him to stop.
I thought that was a really terrible thing to say to a kid. Of course he can get bigger and stronger. He's short and narrow, so he's never going to be a huge guy. He won't be Andy Bolton. He's going to struggle with putting on mass. But he can absolutely get bigger. You can tell him it's going to be hard, he'll have to learn to squat a barbell and curl a fork 6x a day, but telling him he shouldn't start to train and can't succeed?
I can only hope the kid misheard this guy, and took "You can't get much bigger" as "You shouldn't train." But even if he heard wrong, you've got to be careful talking to young guys, especially skinny ones - it's really easy to get discourage. "We can get you bigger and stronger, but it'll be hard" is great, anything with "can't" is going to risk being taken as "so don't even bother."
I sent him my blog post about beginner training and told him to get Starting Strength or download Stronglifts and just start eating more food. He's too broke to get a coach but I told him to hunt around, maybe someone can work with him for little or nothing. Hopefully he'll get going on it. But man...he should be getting that kind of help from his high school sports coach, not from some guy he happens to know.
Rant over for now. I had to get that off my chest!