Strength is possibly the most important skill in Tarkov. It gives awesome bonuses that are useful all throughout the raid, and not only out of combat.
- Jump height to unlock shortcuts and advanced movement across the map.
- Sprint speed: because you move faster, you get to cover more ground and you become a much harder target to hit.
- Throw strength: Toss grenades further.
- Melee damage: Surprisingly this will do more melee damage on each hit, with a chance of criticals at the elite level.
- Aim stamina drain is lower. Hold your gun up for longer.
- Carry weight: Carry more loot. At elite level, only the right side of your inventory actually counts to your weight.
If you’ve never trained your skills, you might mistakenly believe that a 1% boost per level is negligible, but train your strength and watch for the moment when you level up. If you’re well attuned to your movement, then you definitely will feel a significant change. You’ll begin making hard jumps easier, and eventually open whole new paths i.e being able to jump over head-high fences or be able to jump straight from tankers into factory without going to gate or ZB-1012. Especially useful for hiding gear of dead teammates.
The combat benefits of having a high strength skill are massive. There are few people who have experience fighting against someone with maxed-out strength, and thus are unable to factor in for the new movement options and the fast rotation times. The high speed makes you an incredibly hard target to spot or even attempt to hit. all the while you unlock new grenade throw options (i.e from the blue container all the way by marked room on dorms, customs).
Strength can be really cheap and easy to train passively. I’ve seen many guides on the internet which are flat-out wrong or unnecessarily expensive: telling you to use expensive stimulants or throw hundreds of grenades. Strength can only be trained in 3 ways: By throwing grenades, by doing melee attacks (you should train melee for faster weapon switch speeds, which speeds up nearly all actions.) Or by the distance travelled while encumbered (if your weight is in yellow zone), this has no skill points limit.
Without spending hours on your own trying to cheese strength, you can passively do it while playing regularly. A one-time investment to buy weights to put into your secure container is all you need. You can fill a Documents Case full of SAS Drives and immediately have 5,5KG on you in two slots. Equip a Freeman Crowbar for an extra 1.9KG. And if that’s not enough, make a ‘dumbbell’ and fully kit out a TRAX handguard for an additional 3.2KG. All this weight here cannot be lost, and combine it with a normal gear set, and you’ll reach 35KG (at level 0 strength) very easily. You’ll need to slowly add more weight as you level up your strength due to being able to carry more. More weight will give slightly more skill points per kilometer, but regening stamina faster will ultimately win out in speed.
Eventually, you’ll be able to get most of your investment back by selling the SAS drives to Peacekeeper. This training is based on your Endurance skill, so I recommend training both by starting a raid slightly under-encumbered which will train endurance, as you begin looting, you’ll then train strength for the latter half of the raid.