The Best Ways to Reduce the Chance of Injury
Serious about getting fit or not, an injury is something anyone would like to avoid at all costs. Nursing even the slightest bit of pain or trauma can interfere with your regular routine, undo the fitness progress you’ve made, and can be a serious cause of annoyance. The good news is that with correct information and proper guidance, injuries can be prevented altogether.
To make things easier for you, we’ve compiled the most invaluable tips that newbies and gym rats alike can follow for a safe, injury-free workout. Check them out:
A lot of people tend to underestimate the power of a good warm-up. Even when your workout isn’t focused on cardio, it’s important that you take a few minutes to gradually increase the body temperature with 10-15 minutes of light movement. Very Well Fit explains that this loosens up stiff muscles, increase oxygen and blood flow, and prepares your body and state of mind for harder exercises. Consider this fact: when muscles are cold, they’re more prone to injury.
Stretch outside of working out
Warm-up and stretching are often lumped together in one category but they actually have distinctions. Stretching refers to static movements performed to increase flexibility. When you should do it is a vital piece of information: never before exercising. The NHS cites evidence that pre-workout stretching actually weakens muscular performance and does not reduce risk of injury. However, stretching at least three times a week helps achieve full range of motion in the joints which results in stability and better muscle balance.
Pay attention to form
Before increasing weights when lifting, make sure you’ve covered the basics first: proper form and technique. If you perform a barbell squat with knees over the toes and shoulders slumped forward, then that really isn’t a squat—it’s something else that might cause injury. To maximise full benefits, master the technique of a bodyweight squat, or the fundamentals of any other workout, before adding any amount of weight.
Lift what you can
Working out can be exciting once you’ve found a groove, but don’t let the enthusiasm be a source of injury. Listen to your body telling you how much it can lift. Spokesperson for the American Council on Exercise, Cris Dobrosielski, stresses the importance of starting with lighter loads then progressing over time. He told Healthline that the key is being challenged without feeling fatigued. In any workout you do, there should be control in the ascent, descent, or lateral movement. If you only have to move your arms, then the rest of your body should be static. If your body gets jerked out of balance, then you’re probably lifting too much weight.
Switch it up
Doing one set of exercises over and over again may lead to something called repetitive stress injury (RSI) such as tendonitis, stress fractures, or shin splints. Athletes are in high risk of RSIs such as stress fractures because of how they put stress on the same muscles, joints, and connective tissue. Just this year, Ladbrokes reported that PSG superstar Neymar suffered a metatarsal injury, which is a small crack in the bones of the foot. As expected, around 80% of football injuries occur in the feet and legs because of the demands of the sport. If your training does not take you out of the gym, steer clear of unnecessary pain or injury by introducing a little variety into your routine.
Neymar is reported to be on schedule with his recuperation after his serious injury in February. It’s a reminder to all that rest and recovery are essential in keeping the body healthy on all accounts. After an intense sweat session, JLL Fitness previously highlighted the benefits of a foam roller in muscle relaxation after it’s been exerted. Pay attention to your hydration and nutrition and make sure that you’re getting generous amounts of each. Honour your body on rest days and just focus on letting your muscles heal and prepare for more training.
Hire a trainer
Perhaps the most obvious tip is to hire a trainer especially when you’re just starting a strength programme. It’s a trainer’s job to create a workout around your needs or goals, and teach how to execute the movements properly so that you’ll be set when you’re ready to take it solo.
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