A common occurrence in gyms are injuries. Yes, I know its hard to believe because you don't hear about it very often. One reason you don't hear about it is because most injuries "show up" long after you leave the gym. Men's Fitness did an article on gym injuries that I thought was interesting. Before I give you a summary of the article, I'd like to save you time and tell you that if you have a personal trainer like me, you will reduce your chance of injury at the gym. Why?
First, it is always good to have a partner to spot your routine. That alone will help you avoid many injuries. Secondly, I am trained to help you work muscle groups and ranges of motion that will reduce your chances of injury.
Here is a list of common injuries and my comments:
1. Foot and Ankle: Get a good pair of shoes that offer you good support. Also, make sure your footwear is task appropriate. Shoes are made for specific tasks including weight lifting. Secondly, have a workout partner check your stance. Most injuries can be avoided by "squaring up" your stance and making sure your body alignment is correct.
2. Knees: Stretching prior to your exercise is always a good idea in addition to the advice I gave for preventing injuries to your Foot and Ankle. Another good idea is to work on specifically warming up your knee before exercises like doing squats.
3. Lower back: In addition to buying good workout shoes to help prevent injuries, make sure you wear good supportive dress and casual shoes between workouts. Never, ever skimp on your footwear. It is the one product that you should spend enough on to get the support you need. Other suggestions include relaxing with your back on the floor for a few minutes, yoga, or other aids. Take care of your back!
4. Shoulder: The best way to prevent injury in this area of your body is to do exercises that permit a full range of motion, preferably in balance. Now, you won't be able to do arm curls with weights with both arms. However, you will want to do arm curl motions that do not strain the tendons in your arms. Strive for weights that first allow a full range of motion before you add more weight. You will reduce the change of injury and also get more from your workout.
5. Neck: Did you know that the neck is often forgotten in the stretching routine? When I observe people stretching out, they usually stretch their necks by accident, (i.e. a torso twist). Neck rolls and turns that do not strain your neck and shoulders are appropriate before exercise. Also, between workouts, keep a good posture and body alignment to help prevent neck injury during a workout.
For more tips on gym injuries, click on this link: Men's Health, to read the article.
Chill Out, Chill Fit!