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Avoid injury during weight training

November 3, 2008

Today was an off day. We went for a two and a half mile walk. I’ll lift again Tues, Wed, Fri, Sat. Cardio on three of them, haven’t decided which three but probably wed, fri, sat since tomorrow is voting day.


Most often the injuries I see at work are related to a fall. Elderly people tend to break hips. One of the best ways to avoid breaking hips later and getting osteoporosis or osteopenia is to lift heavy weights and doing exercise that places weight through your joints such as calisthenics.

But to have that wonderful future of not falling and breaking your hip, it really helps to not get an injury NOW. Avoiding injury is one of the easier things to do. Recovering from injury could take six months to two years to fully recover from. The best ways to avoid injury are to use proper form while lifting weight that you are able to manage. Posture is important. Killing your back for that extra 20 lbs on your squat is not worth it. Back surgery is just as unsuccessful as it is successful. You don’t want to live with pain for the rest of your life, leading to inability to lift, leading to breaking that hip when your only 60.

Posture being most important, weight is next. Lifting unmanageable weights causes all of your muscles, tendons, and ligaments to work that much harder to stabilize the weight that you’re about to drop on your head. Head injuries are no fun either. A lady at our facility had a head injury. She’s young. And she’s unable to do anything for herself. So, lift heavy, but not so that you’re putting your head or your body in danger. A sprain or strain can take weeks to months to recover from and also can lead to increased risk of injury later. If you injure it now, it will be weaker later which means you could injure it again and again and again. Leading to less lifting which in turn, again, leads to falling and breaking that hip. Or both hips. You don’t want that.

When going for that one rep max, don’t be crazy, use a spotter. Since my spotter is a four legged hairy beast I’ll skip going for that one rep max. My cat just doesn’t have the thumb dexterity to help me lift the weight off my chest… I should have bought a monkey…

Guess that’s it :). Happy lifting.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Alyce permalink
    November 3, 2008 7:33 PM

    Great advice on proper form, it’s so much more important than a lot of other factors and I know sometimes I need to be reminded of that!

  2. November 3, 2008 7:40 PM

    Even I need reminders sometimes that form is more important than the amount of weight. I just want to get that next weight goal and sometimes I bump up my weight too soon ending up with poor form, and then have to kick myself in the butt.

  3. November 6, 2008 6:52 PM

    You are right…proper form and progression is an important lesson for people to apply…guarantees more, long term success in the gym

  4. November 6, 2008 10:14 PM

    Thanks Corey. Less injuries always mean better success ;). I think you’re the first trainer to post here. I’ve been going on my own here but at times it’d be nice to have a trainer to ask questions for when I’m not sure about my form. Instead I’ve been going to U-tube to watch some of the widely known trainers do the exercise. Of course, you’re a bit far from my home.

  5. November 8, 2008 1:14 PM

    Well put, M. I have to keep reminding myself in the gym to tone it down, stick to form. It’s easy to get too aggressive, and getting hurt sucks in soo many ways.

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