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Preventing Injuries While Weight Training

February 9, 2016

With the new year here, several people have hit the gym enthusiatically to start a new exercise program for their New Year's Resolution!  However, many people are quickly sidelined with fitness injuries due to poor form or simply lack of focus.  When done correctly, training can help you lose fat, increase strength and muscle tone, and improve bone density.  If done incorrectly, weight training won't give you these benefits -- and may lead to injury. 

Poor technique while training can lead to muscle sprains, strains, stress fractures and other painful injuries that can hamper your training efforts.  If you're just getting started, work with a knowledgeable weight training specialist such as a physical therapist, athletic trainer or other fitness specialist who's familiar with proper training techniques.

Weight Training "Do's":

  • Warm up - It is imperative to warm up before each workout to ensure proper circulation of blood and nutrients to the muscles and surrouding tissue.
  • Lift an appropriate amount of weight - Start with a weight you can lift comfortably 12-15 times, anywhere from 1-3 sets of 12-15 repetitions.
  • Use proper form - Learn to perform the exercises correctly.  Move through the full range of motion for your joints. The better your form, the better results you will see. 
  • Breathe  - Do not hold your breath, which can increase blood pressure.
  • Perform weight training at least 2 times a week.
  • Rest  - Avoid working the same muscle group 2 days in a row. 
  • Proper hydration and nutrition. 

Weight Traning "Don'ts":

  • Don't skip the warm up - Cold muscles are more prone to injury than warm muscles. 
  • Don't rush - Move the weights through a slow, controlled motion which helps isolating the muscle you are targeting.  Rest at least one minute between each exercise. 
  • Don't overdo - Don't push yourself past the point of fatigue.
  • Don't ingore pain - If you have pain with any exercise, stop.  Make sure the form is correct and decrease the weight.
  • In order to maximize your results and benefits from weight training, make sure you follow these simple do's and don'ts to prevent exercise injuries. 


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