Gym Safety Tips To Keep You From Getting Hurt!

Posted on February 23rd, 2014 at 8:47 pm by

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 photo ID-100209604_zps5a063de5.jpgLarge muscles, toned bodies, lifting here, running there.  The mix of those things combined with heavy, cumbersome equipment makes the gym a potentially hazardous environment.  For the unfortunate person who is not paying attention, a broken arm, a stubbed toe, or a slip is but a step away.  So what are can we do to keep from getting hurt?  We want the benefits that come along with attending the gym, but we don’t want to be the paranoid parrot.

Warm Up

If you are planning to do any heavy lifting, or cardio workouts, then ease yourself into the workout with a few simple stretches, or very low impact exercises.  New studies have claimed that over excessive stretching prior to a workout is ill advised.  So, try gentle stretches, enough to loosen the sockets.    Some warm up exercises suggested are:

  • Breathing exercises
  • Chest, calf stretches
  • Neck and arm stretches
  • Ankle bounces low intensity
  • Walking quad and lunge stretch
  • Kneeling hip stretch
  • Squat
  • Side Step Lunges

Spotters / Partners

When doing any heavy lifting workout, always have a spotter.  The spotter will be there to assist you in the event you cannot lift the weight, or if you are unable to bring the weight back down.  A spotter can also note your technique and point out areas of improvement.  They can help to keep you focused.  Most importantly, they are there to keep you or anybody else from getting hurt.  A spotter can be a friend, a personal trainer, or another gym member.  They need to be people who are knowledgeable about the equipment you use, and who are strong enough to handle the weight of the equipment you use.  If you are working on 100lb weights, but your spotter is capable of only lifting a 5lb weight, then you need to find another spotter.

Proper Technique and Knowledge of Equipment

Most of the injuries caused at the gym are the result of poor exercise technique and poor knowledge of the equipment.  Before entering an aerobics or cycle class, check with the instructor regarding the correctness of your technique.  If you’re cycling using an incorrect posture, you might leave the class with a pain in your back rather than a fulfilling workout.  Similarly, if you’re lifting extremely heavy weights, you need to know what is the proper lifting stance.  Never lift heavy weights alone, especially if it’s your first time.  In addition to using proper technique, educate yourself about the use of the gym equipment.  If you do not know how to change the weight settings of a Smith machine, don’t attempt it on your own.  Doing so may result in either a machine’s part dropping onto your fingers, or your fingers getting caught in a really tight space.

Know Your Rights In Case of an Injury

If you do get injured at the gym and you feel that legal action is required against the gym owner, be aware that anything you do, say, or agree with can affect your case.  Don’t be forced to sign anything by the gym manager, especially if you are uncertain about what you are signing.

Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

About the Author

Jennifer is a writer at The McMinn Law Firm, a business and personal injury law firm located in Austin, Texas.  She is not the biggest fan of working out, but she knows that fitness and safety are both very important.

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