By: Kennedy Shelley
Some sports carry with them their own risk of injuries.
Football: Concussions and knee tears
Running: Knee cartilage damage
Hockey: Too numerous to mention
But are the exercises you are doing in the gym capable of putting you on the sidelines, or worse yet, doing serious long-term damage to your body?
At particular risk are your joints, especially the point where they rotate. These areas can get quickly inflamed when exercises are done incorrectly.
And there are some injuries that can occur from overuse. Here are some that you might want to pay particular attention to:
I got into this with CrossFit. Swinging a weight between your legs doesn’t seem like it would do much until you try it. If strengthens your glutes and your core.
The problem happens when you switch from only bringing the kettlebell to eye level (Russian Swing) to overhead (American Swing).
When you go overhead, you have now switched from the highly stable glutes to less stable lower back as the anchor point with the weight which increases the risk for back injury.
And then the rotator part of the shoulders gets at risk of injury when the weight starts going higher than eye level.
If you keep the swing lower, you are going to get almost all the benefits, with none of the risks.
Guys want broad shoulders. The Lat pull-down is one of those lifts that should make this happen. The problem starts when you try and pull it behind your head.
You create a very high amount of stress on fragile parts of your shoulder joint when you put that much stress you pull behind you. This is not a natural flow of muscle.
There is no benefit to any sport or activity that can come from pulling the bar behind your head, so you are putting yourself at risk of injury, for absolutely nothing.
Just pull the bar down to your chest.
It is as primeval as running. It is a pure exercise, it’s a basic test of strength. It’s you against gravity. It’s the basic pull-up, but when you do it wrong, it can knock you out of the game.
Just like the pull-down it’s a slight change in the movement that makes all the injury difference.
If you take too wide of a grip, and especially a wide grip with your palms toward you, you put your rotation in your shoulders at risk of tears.
The chin-up grip palms toward you should not engage the shoulders, that is for biceps.
If you can’t do this, start with pull-up bands to help with the weight so you can keep good form and then remove them as you get stronger.
Who wouldn’t like those cool muscles in the legs where you can see where the big quadriceps muscles go to each side of your knee?
And you really see that effect when you sit down at the leg extension machine.
And you are doing a non-functional exercise that puts a ridiculous amount of strain on your knee and the surrounding support tissue.
Squats build up all the muscles in that area, and because all the muscles work together you not only get stronger, you get more stable too.
Crunching Bicycle Style
Some pains you never want to experience, and a compressed disk and lower back pain is certainly one of them.
So, avoiding bicycle crunches should be on your list of things not to do.
This exercise is designed to create a herniated disk in your back (eventually).
Just don’t do it.
While we at Freedom Health News want you to be active, we also want you in the game as long as possible, so hopefully you will take our advice on some of the stuff to avoid.