Safety In The Gym
When you are at the gym lifting weights, doing cardio, stretching and getting stronger, we tend to forget about the basics.
And these basics We want You to pay attention to are about such obvious thing as safety!
Sadly, many of us neglect such thing as safety. It’s not rare that you can see some big guy come in the gym, hop on the bench press, put on heavy weight and start exercising. Well, that is the perfect way to get yourself injured!
Here in this article are 10 most important things that we think you should pay attention to most! (There is no specific order, and first thing on the list doesn’t make last thing less important!)
Never try to lift weight you can’t handle.
Building up strength at the gym takes time, don’t rush it! If You are new to the gym, You tend to overdo things. Try to look impressive (especially if there are beautiful ladies around).
In this case, you should always remember the tree step rule – Form -> Range of motion > Weight. In that exact order! Form is always most important, therefore we use light weights to do it right! As good buddy of mine once said:
It’s not about how many reps that you do count. It’s about making sure every rep you do count!
It is always a good idea to ask somebody to “spot” You, if you are willing to do heavy lifting. Also, it’s the best way to get that gym pump that everyone’s after. When you go to your limit and can’t lift anymore, your buddy will help you to go pass your limits. That’s where the growth is!
Be safe and the strength will come. Getting in shape and staying fit is not a sprint. It’s a marathon.
Like We established before, Form is most crucial when it comes to weight lifting. Then comes range of motion and then weight. First learn correct form and only then increase your weight.
Correct form is the only thing that will prevent injuries. Furthermore, You will get strong faster by using correct form, rather than other gym goers than lift heavy and injure themselves, therefore have to waste time on recovery rather than actual gym.
Well, this is simple, right? You are lifting weights, sweating and losing water. Replenish it to not get dehydrated. What I like to do when I’m working out is not drink a lot at once but more times for lesser the amount!
That way your body can absorb water better.
When we are working out, all we care is the workout and nothing else. Most gym goers are using headphones and have no idea what is going on around them. (I used to be one of them).
You don’t want someone to knock you with a dumbbell accidentally while doing shoulder exercises, do you? So keep your eyes open and pay attention.
Always put back your weights after you have finished using them
Not only it is basic gym etiquette but also re-racking weights makes gym a safer place. Leaving weights on the floor where anyone can step on them just begs for an accident. Have you ever hit your toes against some random dumbbell? Well, imagine falling over them while carrying a heavy weight.
Get a spotter or a gym buddy
Gym buddy is one of those things that can not only make safer training for you, but also improve your results in the exercises you do. It’s one of those things that can keep your motivation up, keep you going, keep the fire alive. More about that you will be able to read in our BLOG section about motivation.
But right now – safety. A spotter, in exercises like squats, bench press, deadlift, shoulder press, should be a must in the gym. When you are doing these exercises, there is a high probability you are using heavy weight and you are under a lot of stress.
Spotter will always be able to jump in and save you from getting an injury. But you have to make sure your spotter is reliable. Never get one that has headphones on and not paying any attention. Just like we talked about in previous point about surroundings.
We have an entire article about this topic. It might as well be the most important part of your daily routine. About the importance of Warm Up, you can READ HERE.
Warm-up is what will save you from getting injured! But make sure you read warm up basics to really understand the importance of the topic. And don’t take it lightly. There’s a good reason why professional athletes do warm up routines before the games and when they are switching in.
Don’t Rush Things
It’s not easy to get in gym / home workout routine if you have all your life been neglecting physical activities. Furthermore, it could be hard just to find time and willingness to get to the gym! And to make things worse, we want everything fast and right now.
However do not ever rush things. Rush it and you will get injured. Start slowly and work things up slowly. Don’t go all out from day one. Start by getting 8 hours of sleep every day, then adjust your diet – cut out all the fats (bad ones) more about that in Nutrition.
Always keep in mind that the whole process of getting fit is a marathon, not a sprint!
The worst thing that can happen to you is to burn out! Then you will definitely lose the will to keep going.
Get A Yearly Health Check
Serious medical conditions can even happen to most active individuals. For an example, hear diseases, diabetes e.t.c. Most GYM rules demand you to make yearly checks. But remember, exercising in these conditions can make it worse! Explain your fitness plans to your doctor.
In most cases, your doctor will only tell you that it’s the best thing to do. In case you have any medical conditions, you may be given some restrictions. REMEMBER IT WILL ONLY BENEFIT YOU!
Listen to your doctor he knows what is best for you!
Second most important thing after the Warm UP, for sure. Reduces probability of getting DOMS effect by a large margin. Definitely read our article on Injury Prevention.
Your cool-down routine should always consist of stretching just as well as some cardio exercise, for an example running for 10 minutes.
The Bottom Line
Pay attention to these 10 simple things and you should be safer in the gym. Sadly, there is no way to completely eliminate the dangers of physical activity environment.
And if you see someone in the gym with headphones, tell him how he’s endangering not only himself but others as well! You have to look out for others, if they are not willing to do that themselves! Be a pleasant person to make gym a better place.