Many of us do not consider the importance of exercise safety when we embark on a workout regime. We are usually more concerned with burning calories and shedding those unwanted pounds, but being safety conscious should be a priority if we want to achieve the best benefits from our workouts.
We must consider two important exercise safety categories: strains and other injuries that can occur from the exercises themselves, and external dangers which can jeopardize our safety during exercise. Below we will point out some of the most common dangers from both categories, and suggest tips to help avoid them.
Exercise Safety Tip #1 – Proceed with caution.
When we begin a workout regime, it is important to gradually work our way up to higher levels of intensity. There are numerous common injuries sustained by over doing things too soon. These include injuries such as torn ligaments, back damage, strained muscles, sprained wrists, ankles, shoulders and knees so we should take a more cautious approach and take things easy when we are first starting our exercise programme.
Exercise Safety Tip #2 – Awareness of surroundings.
Whether we are exercising in our own home or outdoors, it is vital that we are aware of our surroundings. Whether we want to avoid banging ourselves against furniture or being hit by a vehicle, awareness and prevention can help to keep us free from injury and ensure our safety.
Exercise Safety Tip #3 – Use equipment correctly.
Many exercise injuries can be attributed to the use of unsafe equipment, or improper use of exercise equipment. Whether we are lifting weights, riding a bicycle or using a rowing machine, we should make sure we use the equipment available is intended for this activity, and make sure that we are using it as the instructions intend it to be used. For example, we should not try to use a bicycle that is intended for street use as a mountain bike, or a couple of bricks and a piece of wood as a step.
Exercise Safety Tip #4 – Dress appropriately.
Different forms of exercise will require different types of clothing and footwear. We should look into which type of footwear are the best for walking, running, aerobics and other sports such as tennis and dance. We should also consider different types of fabrics and find out which ones will allow our skin to breathe and keep us cool and dry during workouts. If we are exercising outdoors in the early morning or evening when the lighting is poor, we should wear reflective clothing and footwear to make sure we are seen.
Exercise Safety Tip #5 – Keep well hydrated.
We normally sweat during a workout, which means fluid loss, which can lead to dehydration unless we are drinking adequate water before, during and after our workout. We should keep a bottle of water close at hand so that we can drink plenty of water during our workout. Ideally we should drink 8-10 8oz glasses of water daily, plus an additional glass or two during a 30 minute workout session. We can safely drink more than this, particularly in high temperatures or if we are especially thirsty.
It is really only common sense to follow a safe exercise regime. We should try to not be careless, and try to think ahead to avoid any possible dangers. If we think and plan ahead we can avoid the common injuries associated with exercise and fitness.