If you want to build big, strong muscles, lifting weights is one of the best ways to achieve your goals. However, if you don’t take the right precautions when lifting weights, you can seriously injure yourself. That’s why in this article I’m going to be covering some of the main precautions you need to take when lifting weights to ensure that you have a safe, successful workout.
1) Test The Bench Before You Use It
Even if a bench looks secure, you should always test it by sitting or lying on it in the position you’ll be lifting from before you pick up the weights. It’s much better to realize that the bench isn’t secure using your own bodyweight than it is when you’re holding a heavy barbell or set of dumbbells. By doing this, you’ll not only give yourself peace of mind but you’ll also prevent a range of potentially serious injuries.
2) Make Sure You Secure The Plates
If you’re using a barbell, always make sure the plates are tightly locked and secure before you start lifting. Failing to do this can cause the plates to wobble and fall off mid-exercise which makes you much more likely to drop the barbell and injure yourself.
3) Always Use A Spotter With Barbell Exercises
Unlike dumbbells and machines (where you can drop then mid-exercise without injuring yourself), dropping a barbell half way through a rep often results in it crashing down on your body. Therefore, if you’re using a barbell, always make sure you have a spotter. Not only will they protect you against injury by catching the barbell if your muscles give out but they can also provide you with additional support during your final rep if you need it.
4) Do A Warm Up Set
Lifting heavy weights without warming up properly significantly increases your chances of getting injured. To reduce your risk, grab a set of light weights at the beginning of each exercise and perform a warm up set of 20 reps. Doing this will loosen up your muscles, get the blood flowing and protect against muscles strains and tears when you move on to the heavier weights.
5) Listen To Your Body
Your body does a great job of telling you when it needs to rest and when it’s ready to workout if you listen to it. So if you find your muscles are still sore on the day of a scheduled workout, give that body part an extra day’s rest and work another group of muscles instead. Doing this ensures that you only train specific muscle groups when they’re fully recovered and helps protect them from overtraining injuries.
As with any form of exercise, lifting weights is not without its risks. However, as long as you take the necessary precautions, you can avoid injury and build up your muscles in a safe environment. So take another look at the precautions discussed in this article and next time you hit the gym, make sure you follow them all.