Nothing will put a hold on your fitness progress like a sudden injury. A new injury could rear its ugly head if you’ve been neglecting stretching before or after each workout or if you’re using poor form. There are a number of different fitness mistakes people make that can lead to injury, and in this blog, we’ll share some of the most common ones we see as personal trainers, so you can avoid these mistakes and stay healthy as you work to reach your fitness goals.
Mistake #1: Doing too much too soon
One of the most common mistakes our personal trainers see is when a person pushes themselves to do too much too quickly. It’s understandable to want results to come quickly, but you may actually be setting yourself up for a big letdown. You might have done high-intensity workouts in the past, or even fairly recently, but if you’ve taken time off, your body may not be ready to jump back in the right away.
It’s always wise to create a realistic workout plan that’s suitable for your current fitness level and increase the intensity slowly and steadily. Always look for long term results when trying to get in shape as opposed to the fastest possible path, which oftentimes can make results slower or even non-existent.
Mistake #2: Overuse
Whether it’s a piece of equipment, a specific workout move, or a certain muscle group, doing the same things over and over can lead to injury for a few reasons. Focusing too much on one muscle or muscle group can lead to overuse injuries, but it can also weaken other muscles that aren’t being used, making them more injury-prone as well.
Using the same machine at the gym is another common mistake. When you use the same machines, you continuously work the same muscle groups in one linear path. By changing it up and using more free weights, you’ll be mimicking real life movements more and you’ll also be using muscle groups that will help with stabilization and injury prevention.
Mistake #3: Bad form
Proper form is essential for preventing injury during most workouts. Heavy exercises like benching, squatting, or deadlifting can lead to severe injuries including ligament and muscle tears if you perform them with bad form, due to the sheer amount of weight being forced on the body. Even bodyweight squats and cardio exercises can lead to injuries over time with poor form, since these typically cause injuries by repeatedly doing the same bad form over and over, potentially for hundreds of reps in a short amount of time. When in doubt, consult with a personal trainer to learn proper form to avoid injury.
Mistake #4: Not warming up or recovering properly
Half the battle for staying healthy during your workout happens outside of the gym. Showing up to the gym dehydrated or poorly nourished, puts you at a higher risk of injuring yourself before you ever pick up a weight. After your workout, when your body is fatigued, the way you recover directly impacts your gains and your health. A dynamic warm up before your workout can ensure you’ve increased blood flow to the muscles involved and a post-workout stretch adds added flexibility and mobility to potentially tight muscles.
At Philly Personal Training, we can help you avoid making costly workout mistakes, so you stay healthy as you reach your fitness goals. Contact us today to learn from the best personal trainers in Philadelphia.