Five Most Common Gym Injuries That Happen to Beginners

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It’s easy to get overly enthusiastic when we first start going to the gym or working out outdoors – we’re keen to see toning and muscle growth immediately. We ignore common sense and push our bodies to the limits in hope that we’ll achieve our ideal physique in no time.

Unfortunately, pushing our bodies too hard too soon, and doing exercises incorrectly, can lead to painful and, sometimes, long term injuries.

So let’s take a look at some of the most common gym injuries and how we can avoid them.

1.Pulled muscles

Pulled muscles are most often caused by overdoing it when you first start training. It can be tempting to whack on those 20kg plates right from the get-go or sprint across the park like you need to beat Mo Farrah, but seriously, this is far more likely to cause you a injury than it is to benefit you. To avoid injuring yourself when you first start out, start with lighter weights & shorter distances at a slower pace and build up gradually.

Tip: Always make sure that you WARM UP before working out. A five-minute warm up cuts down your risk of injury by increasing the blood flow to the muscles which loosens the joints.

2.Shoulder Injuries

Shoulder injuries are one of the most common gym injuries. They are often caused by some of the reasons already mentioned - lifting weights that are too heavy, and not warming up. Dumbbell shoulder press injuries are common – this can come from an imbalance in the rotator cuff - the four muscles responsible for stabilising the shoulder. It is also common to experience shoulder pain whilst using a bench press for the same reasons.

Shoulder injuries whilst weight lifting can also be caused by the incorrect use of the gym equipment.

Tip: Alongside warming up your shoulders, always make sure you ask how to use a piece of gym equipment correctly before using it for the first time - it will save a lot of discomfort in the long run.

3.Back and Neck Injuries

Our backs and necks are often the first to suffer when we injure ourselves whilst working out.

Neck pain after exercise could easily be caused by over exertion or incorrect positioning or posture during exercise. One of the most common exercises to cause neck pain is sit ups, as they put strain on our neck. This is why it is important to get the correct positioning before you begin – if you are unsure, ask a personal trainer or fitness professional.

Upper back pain during a workout is also common – this is often caused by muscle tightness, which can be alleviated by always remembering to warm up and warm down before and after exercise.

Tip: Always remember to warm down after exercise – simple exercises such as neck rolls can stop our muscles from seizing up and prevent long- term injury.

4.Dropping weights

This may not seem like a big deal, but dropping heavy weights in the gym can cause some pretty painful injuries if you’re not careful. A dumbbell dropped from a certain height can crush a finger or toe! The same goes when it comes to adjusting machines – if you’re not sure how to change the weight, or height on a machine then ask for help to avoid trapping your fingers and causing injury.

Tip: Make sure that weights on dumbbells are fastened before lifting them. Always release the weights from each side with the bar held vertically to avoid dropping on yourself.

5.Tripping on equipment

In a busy gym, there is always plenty left lying around for us to trip over. When you’re light headed from a sprint on the treadmill tripping and falling on an exercise mat/dumbbell/pilates ball is pretty common! This can and does cause serious injury – from sprained wrists and ankles, bumped heads and knees – not what you want when you are first starting to get into your gym groove.

Tip: Be aware as you’re walking around. Pick up anything you see that might be a trip hazard, and make sure that you wipe off equipment to avoid it becoming slippery. Wearing the appropriate footwear is also very important.

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