Weight Lifting Techniques that Will Prevent Injury
While weight training might be one of the most popular sports in the world, it is also one of the sports that is most frequently done incorrectly. Form is the #1 most important aspect to be aware during your workout. The Mayo Clinic explains that if you are performing a lift wrong, it can lead to “sprains, strains, fractures and other painful injuries.” To avoid these risks, there are important things that you need to be aware of so that you don’t risk an injury that will stop your training in its tracks.
1. Learn the Movement
If you are a weightlifter, you should never be settling for “winging it.” If you are interested in performing a lift, become intimately acquainted with the motion. Before you even pick up a weight, make sure that you know exactly how and where your muscles should be moving.
Good weightlifters are weightlifting technicians who make an art out of their sport. Don’t limit yourself by learning a motion wrong. When you have the motion down, don’t twist, turn, or contort your muscle when performing a rep because it is likely to result in injury over time.
2. Know Your Limits
If you are trying to reach a goal, it may be easy to sacrifice your form to get the weights up. However, this is a really unsafe way of thinking because it is with the heavier weights that you risk injury. If you cannot perform a lift with proper technique, you should not perform it at all.
A lot of lifters try to perform the Valsalva Maneuver while lifting. This means that they force the glottis (the vocal cords in your throat) closed in order to build up intra-abdominal pressure to perform a difficult lift. Even though some resort to this maneuver, it is actually very unsafe. It can cause an extreme spike in blood pressure and also cuts down on cerebral circulation, which can kill brain cells.
When you perform lifts of any weight, make sure to continue breathing. It is important that your muscles are properly fueled with oxygen when they are working hard to get stronger.
4. Pay Attention to the Pain
If you feel any unusual pain while performing a lift, stop immediately. Do not try to work through the pain, because it will most likely get worse. It is normal to feel burning in your muscles while lifting, as you know, but if it is an uncomfortable or concentrated pain, pay attention. This could be the beginning sign of an injury.
To make sure that it doesn’t turn into a full-blown injury that stops you from training, take a few days or weeks off. After trying it again and the pain persists, try using less weight or continue to rest.
5. Appreciate Rest
Resting between reps is important, but resting for a full week after 4-6 weeks of lifting is important as well. Since lifting breaks down your muscles, rest allows them to grow and build to become stronger. Taking off a full week allows your body to rejuvenate and recuperate from the strain of exercise.