Exercise Safety Tips

  • By Premier Family Medical
  • 20 Jan, 2017

Exercise is crucial both for physical and emotional health. However, it is important to exercise safely to avoid injury and remain healthy. Exercise safety is all about following the basic techniques and listening to the way your body is responding. It may be difficult to find the right balance of too hard and too easy, but it’s always better to start slow and build as your fitness and strength grows. It is recommended that you do a basic exercise for 30 minutes 5 days a week and you can gradually build up to that as your body is able to tolerate it. Something as simple as walking can be a great exercise.

If you haven’t exercised in a long time, it is recommended for you to see a doctor before embarking on the exercise routine. This will ensure that you are free of any conditions that would limit how frequent or how strenuous your exercise program should be. Once you are cleared to exercise, the following tips will help you stay safe and avoid injury.

Warm Up and Cool Down

You should do a 5-10 minute warm-up to prepare your body for exercise. Aerobic activities are helpful in increasing the muscle temperature, blood flow and increasing your breathing rate all of which help your body to cope with the demands placed during exercise. Cool down for an equal amount of time by decreasing your pace or activity to allow your breathing and heart rate to get back to normal.

Stretch

Stretching will help you stay flexible. Stretching should be done after warm-up to avoid injury and you should avoid stretching cold muscles. It’s also important to stretch after exercise while your muscles are warm to increase flexibility. 

There are several things to know about stretching:

  • You should stretch slowly and gently holding for about thirty seconds
  • Do not push the stretch too hard to the point of discomfort
  • Avoid bouncing when stretching, try and hold on to it and relax
  • Start short and shallow and build up to a long and deep stretch

Know Your Limits

If you feel tired and your body cannot do the exercise anymore, do not force it, this can lead to injury. If you feel faint, stop the exercise and rest. If you are using weights in your exercise program be careful with how much weight you use. Pick a weight that challenges you, but still allows you to complete the exercise with proper form and technique. Doing the exercise incorrectly can lead to injury.

Recovery Tips

After a long workout you will need to take some steps to recover and rejuvenate your body. Proper recovery can be just as important as a proper workout. You want to get your body ready for the next time you exercise.

Get enough sleep - lack of sleep can impair both your exercise intensity and recovery.

Get rest - Make some time each day away from exercising to allow your muscles to relax.

Hydrate - You may lose a lot of water during exercise through sweating, and you need to drink plenty of water to replace it. Drink at least two glasses of water before your exercise and another two glasses after cooling down.

Get a massage - Massage helps to reduce stiffness caused by muscle tear and break up scar tissue.

Sanitize - This is a requirement for those who do their exercise at the gym. It is crucial for the well-being of everyone who attends the gym. People sweat a lot, and this sweat causes dampness which attracts bacteria, viruses, and mold in the gym area. These elements can cause athlete's foot, impetigo, and boils. It can also lead to respiratory problems or influenza.

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