On the surface, weightlifting seems simple – like all you need to do is repeatedly pick up heavy objects and put them back down. While this sport is considered friendly to all fitness levels, it is anything but simple. If you’re trying to progress to heavier lifts, you’ll need to pay attention to more than just the numbers on your plates. The effort you put into your workout, from the warm-ups to the recovery, can make all the difference between a successful gym session and one that ends in pain.
Common Weightlifting Injuries
Individuals who perform complicated movements, like barbell complexes, may experience an injury if they lift too quickly or perform the movement with improper form. Injuries that often afflict the muscles and joints of weightlifters include:
While all of these are injuries we can treat here at Airrosti, they should still be avoided whenever possible. Even a mild injury can set you back for days or even weeks at a time. If you’re struggling to get back on track after an injury, connect with an Airrosti provider today. Our providers can help you understand your pain and give you the tools needed to address problems as they appear.
Weightlifting Safety Tips
Warm up before the lift
A good, dynamic warm up can improve blood circulation, activate your central nervous system (which thus improves your reflexes), and can help you perform your movements with proper form. Even a quick 5-minute warm-up routine to get the blood moving is better than lifting weights with cold, unprepared muscles.
***Disclaimer: Always consult with your doctor before starting any exercise program. If you experience any numbness, tingling or reproduction of your symptoms, please contact your doctor.
Practice your form
If you’re new to an exercise or weightlifting in general, take some time before your workout to learn more about the exercises you plan to do. Understanding how those movements are supposed to look, and which muscles are being activated, can help you become more comfortable performing those movements.
Once you understand how your body responds to performing an exercise, try to record your progress over time with a fitness journal. If you’re working out with a buddy, ask them to watch your form and provide feedback. If you’re by yourself, bring a phone or camera to record your workouts so you can review your form later. You can also hire a qualified trainer to help assess your form and give you tips to improve.
Use recovery tools
After a tough workout, your muscles may feel tense and stiff. You may even struggle with Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS). To help reduce tension, improve flexibility, and increase blood flow to those muscles, use recovery tools like foam rollers and lacrosse balls. These handy tools can help you roll out any tense or sore muscles after a workout and can help reduce symptoms of DOMS.
Get enough rest
Consistent exercise forces your muscles to adapt by growing and strengthening through a process known as hypertrophy. Contrary to popular belief, hypertrophy doesn’t occur during exercise, as the muscles are working. The majority of the body’s repairs happen when you rest.
It’s important to get enough rest between sets as well as after your workout. Sleep is also an essential process the body must go through to recover and become stronger each day. If you’re struggling to get enough rest and worry that it may be affecting your exercises, here are a few tips to help get a more restful night of sleep.
Reach Your Fitness Goals with Help from Airrosti
If an injury or pain has been keeping you from achieving your fitness goals, Airrosti can help get you back on track. Our providers are dedicated to finding and treating pain at the source with hands-on manual therapy and custom rehab exercise program to help strengthen, mobilize, and restore function.
This combination of treatment and active rehab has been shown to help resolve most injuries within 3 visits (based on patient-reported outcomes) and help patients stay active during treatment.
Read our Medical Disclaimer here.