Workout injuries are quite ironic if you think about it; you perform exercises and physically exert yourself to stay fit and healthy, but end up getting hurt and perhaps even debilitated when doing so. As such, keeping yourself safe when working out is just as important as regularly exercising to stay healthy. So, let’s take a look at five simple tips that can keep you safe while you get fit:
Consult a Coach or Get a Personal Trainer
Majority of the common workout injuries are due to poor execution or improper use of equipment, so make sure to consult a coach or trainer before performing certain exercises, especially if you’re new to the exercise or equipment. If you have a home gym or prefer to work out at home instead of going to the gym, you can visit a fitness trainer or coach to provide you with a workout regimen or plan you can do at home and teach you the correct execution of the exercise in your regiment/plan. Alternatively, you can also hire a personal trainer that can offer in-home personal training to guide you with your workout. There are also trainers that provide virtual workout or training programs to guide you, which can be quite convenient if you frequently travel for work but still wish to stay fit. Regardless of which option you choose, it’s always a good idea to listen and be guided by an expert to avoid workout injuries.
Take Time to Warm Up
Don’t just jump into a high-intensity workout, or start your CrossFit regimen right after arriving in your Seattle gym. It’s highly suggested that you first perform warm-up exercises and stretch before working out. Warm-up exercises aim to, as the name suggests, helps to warm your muscles and increase your body’s core temperature and heart rate, as well as increasing blood flow to your body and mentally preparing yourself for the upcoming exercises. Warm-up exercises should be gradual to minimize the stress to your heart. Warm and prepared muscles handle stress from workout better and have significantly reduced the risk of injuries, while cold and stiff muscles are less elastic and pliable, thus raising the risk of injuries.
Stretching cold muscles can also lead to injury, which is why you should always warm up before stretching. There is a distinction between warm-up and stretching, although some workouts have merged both warm-up and stretching; while warm-ups prepare your heart and muscles for stress by raising their temperature, stretching focuses on loosening your muscles and give you better flexibility and improve range of motion before the actual exercise. Some dynamic stretching routines can also effectively raise your heart rate and help you warm-up further.
Wear Proper Attire
There’s a reason why there are specific clothing for sports and workout. Not every clothing or accessory is fit for working out. To start, it’s important to invest in a good pair of well-fitted sports footwear that can properly support your foot’s arch, gait, and your body weight. Wearing ill-fitting or worn-out shoes can lead to discomfort and injuries. Wear comfortable and flexible clothing to avoid restricting your movements when working out, which may also lead to getting injured.
Observe Rest and Recovery
Your body will let you know if it’s had enough, either by soreness, aches, or loss of strength in certain body parts. As such, it’s recommended to rest those body parts for 24 to 48 hours. This is why workout schedules and regimens differ per day, targeting different muscles groups to allow other body parts to rest (or at least exert less effort). Hence, it would be best not only to rest once in a while to let your body recover but to properly schedule your workout regimen for different days of the week.
Most workout injuries are caused by poor guidance, poor preparation, and being impatient. The road towards physical fitness should be seen as a gradual, enjoyable, and safe journey. So take your time with your workout, invest in proper clothing and equipment, and get proper guidance so that you can stay healthy and safe.