Lifting safety tips-important training tips for safe liftingJuly 25, 2019
People of any age can get into weight training as long as they adhere to safe training principles, when followed properly, weight training can be beneficial for a healthier and more prosperous lifestyle. Weather if you are young and you feel like you can take on the world, or if you have a quite a few years under your belt, it is never too late or too early to become educated on safety in the training room.
Today i am going to be covering a subject that many people think that they don’t need to spend anytime becoming familiar with because they probably figure they have everything under control and are never going to get injured but an accident can happen in the blink of an eye and it can happen to anyone, so today i will be covering lifting safety tips and practicing important training tips for safe lifting.
who’s at more risk?
One could argue that someone who is a little more up in years should exercise more caution when lifting weights because of more of an aged weaker bone structure and being more prone to injury, and that is true, i believe that you are never too old to start weight training or taking part in some type of structured workout program, but the up in age or the elderly do need to be careful with how much they try to lift or not try to overdue it, or maybe even because of an underlying heart condition.
It isn’t just the people who may be a little more up in years but people of any age can suffer an injury or pulled muscle if they are not trained in proper form or exercise a little caution, actually i would consider younger people as being at more of a risk of injury because they usually come across as being bent on proving themselves or thinking that they could never get injured, i know what it;s like, i used to be that age, i used to think i was a regular ole super hero.
It’s all a part of being young and feeling like you are on top of the world, but it’s at an age like this is when ones way of thinking can get them in trouble.
When i was in my late teens i had big dreams of getting huge and ripped, i would lift seven days a week and always try to lift as heavy as i could, usually trying for max lifts and never giving myself a proper warm up, i would start out cold and jump right into lifting the heavy weights without giving it much thought, but then it came to a screeching halt when i threw my back out when i was 22 years old, to this day 27 years later my lower back has always been a weak link.
So if you are thinking about getting into a weight training program, lifting hard and heavy and getting big muscles but not giving much thought about about safety or giving your muscles a good warm up, take it from me, someone who has been through the pain of muscle injuries and setbacks because of not heeding the advice of others on spending just a little bit of time warming yourself up first, if you spend that little bit of extra time warming up, you will be glad you did.
The importance of stretching
I’m sure it is commonly thought that the only people who do stretching exercises are gymnasts and runners, but this is very untrue, stretching is important for anyone who is into any kind of physical fitness regimen young or old, fit or unfit, it doesn’t even matter if you are not into any specific training program, if you take a person who doesn’t even exercise or give their fitness level any concern, they should still do some kind of stretching every day.
Stretching keeps the muscles and all the ligaments flexible, healthy and strong and that flexibility is needed to maintain a healthy range of motion in the joints, without stretching to maintain flexibility, muscles can tend to shorten and become tight, then when you depend on your muscles for any kind of activity you will find that they are weak and unable to extend to any full range of motion, this will put you at risk of joint pain, victim to strains and muscle damage.
Keeping up with a regular stretching program will keep your muscles and ligaments in good health and less likely to incur injuries that can set you back in achieving your goals.
Importance of cardio
If your endeavor is to engage into a weight training program, it would be a good idea to have some type of cardio training that you should perform before you begin the weight training session of your training program, as this will warm up your muscles and get the blood flowing.
But then it all depends on what your fitness goals are, doing cardio first before you hit the weights is good if your goal is to burn fat and lose weight because after you have performed cardio your heart rate will be elevated, so when you move onto weight training your heart rate will already be elevated so you will continue to burn calories at a faster rate than if you just did weight training alone.
This is all in good theory for a weight loss regimen with cardio and weight training but it’s also in good theory and holds very true when it comes to keeping safe and protecting your muscles and ligaments in preventing muscle tears and strains.
On the other end of the scope, if your goal is to build muscle you are going to be more likely to do your weight training first before the cardio, the reason why this makes sense is that you are naturally going to have more energy for the weight training so that you can build some large muscles.
Your anaerobic system that gives you the energy to get through your weight training will not be as efficient as your aerobic system so your glycogen stores will be depleted much faster, so this is saying that you will start burning fat faster when it comes time for your cardio training session.
This picture i just painted is basically describing the importance of cardio in your training program, whether it be before or after your workout, all dependent upon what your training goals are, but this cardio plays a role in warming your muscles for prevention of injury.
If you are performing your cardio after your weight training then you would still be putting your muscles at risk of injury, but this is where stretching comes in as well as your first few sets of weight training should be with lighter weights and higher reps to prep your muscles for the heavier lifting.
Basic safety tips
Safety in the gym is as important for others as it is for yourself, if you are in the middle of lifting a weight don’t find yourself distracted by looking around and not paying attention to what you are doing, it is simple little things like this that can cause minor muscle pulls.
Always be mindful of others in the gym and don’t be yelling and causing distractions that can be putting others in danger of harm or injury to themselves.
Always remember safety when you are training and if you think that you may need a spotter, then follow through with your gut instinct because it is better to be safe than sorry. Another safety precaution, especially when lifting heavy is to always make sure that you have collars on the barbells good and snug, it’s a sure injury if you are squatting or benching away and a plate slides off the end of the barbell.
When doing heavy squats or dead lifts always make sure that you use proper lifting gear like a weight belt for back support and knee wraps for added protection for the knees, it’s also a good idea to use chalk on your hands for lifts like the dead lifts and barbell shrugs for added grip as well as wrist straps come in handy when performing lifts where the barbell may become too difficult to hold onto.
Try not going to the gym when you have a cold, gym equipment can become a breeding ground for cold germs, this doesn’t fit into gym safety and injury prevention but it’s simply showing common courtesy for others in the gym.
It’s important to remember the basics of training but it’s also important to remember safety when it comes to your weight training, i’m not trying to come off like grandma preaching about safety but you owe it to yourself to stay healthy and avoid injuries and muscle strains as much as possible.
If you are serious about your training and want to see as much positive results as possible and succeed with your goals, then be sure to heed any safety precautions and exercise care when it comes to hoisting heavy weights, remember results will not come over night, it takes time and patience to sculpt the body of a greek god.
Safe training principles are not only for people that may be getting a little up in years or for those that have bad backs or any other physical limitation, but safe training principles are also important for those who are younger and think that they don’t have to worry about injuries because they think that they are above and beyond injury like “that could never happen to me” but think again.
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