We all know working out is a great way to improve your health and fitness level. Unfortunately, it’s also a great way to incur injuries due to improper technique, repetitive movement, or failure to properly warm up and cool down. Here are some of the most common injuries you might face when working out and tips on how to avoid or prevent them. Let your workout enhance your performance rather than leave you sitting on the sidelines!
Although any kind of workout could lead to potential injury, some kinds of workouts are more prone to injury than others, namely strength training and running. Both of these workouts offer great benefits for strength, overall fitness, and muscle efficiency. However, using improper form and trying to do too much too soon leads to strains, soreness, and potentially more damaging injuries. Weight lifters and strength trainers can benefit greatly from working with a fitness coach, at least initially. A coach or trainer will instruct you on the proper technique and body position, plus he or she will be able to move you along your program gradually, allowing the proper time for muscle rest and increase of weight or reps. Runners frequently deal with repetitive stress injuries or knee issues depending on their running form, the terrain they run on, and their particular physical makeup. Proper stretching before running can help, as well as wearing the proper footwear and resting at the first hint of injury rather than pushing through the pain and causing greater damage.
Maybe you aren’t a runner or a weight lifter? You still may need to approach your workouts carefully. Even a seemingly calm fitness routine such as yoga can potentially cause injury. Common yoga injuries may include wrist sprains and muscle soreness or pain from trying to push your body into a position it isn’t ready for. Even some common tried and true exercises can cause big problems down the road if you don’t pay attention to the signals your body is giving you. Sit ups, push ups, crunches, and lunges all help tighten and tone your body. However, these are some of the exercises that can cause recurring injuries due to improper technique.
Fortunately, switching or modifying the exercise just a little may completely prevent injury. Sit ups and crunches place strain on your spine and can lead to back injuries, so you may have better luck with a plank or Pilates C-curve. Push ups can place a terrible strain on shoulders when done using improper form. You may want to do a modified push up on your knees rather than toes. Lunges are great for strengthening legs, and awful for your knees! Doing a supported wall sit offers the same benefits without the potential knee injuries.
In order to ensure you keep getting the most from your particular workout, it is essential that you avoid easily preventable potential injuries. Paying attention to your body will help, along with making sure you are using the proper form. Taking the time to do your workout correctly now will not only ensure that you are getting the most benefit from your routine, but it will also save you soreness, injury, or even surgery down the road.