If you want the best advice about how to avoid injury when you are training then ask an expert. In this guest post, Lucy Howlett of LIFT Personal Training, Brighton, gives some great tips to stay fit and active without pain.
Warm Up Safely
Warming up is vital to keeping the body flexible and adaptable for what we require it to do. Before you run, jump (or fly!) ensure that you spend 5-10 minutes warming up and mobilizing all the joints. You can do this with things like leg swings (forwards and sideways), arms swings, twisting the torso from left to right, shoulder rolls and gently turning the head from left to right to look over each shoulder.
Posture & Technique
Do you know why lifting technique is taught in most workplaces? E.g. bend the legs, back straight and chest up … because technique matters and can be the difference between healthy exercise and injuring your back. So the same applies to when you’re purposefully training, whether with weights or bodyweight exercises. Training with good technique transfers into everyday life, such as having better posture, holding less tension in the body and moving with greater ease.
The importance of having a good level of core strength can sometimes only hit home when you’ve hurt your back or sustained another type injury caused by a lack of core strength. The layers of core musculature are like a corset that protects your internal organs and keeps the rest of your body stable and supported. Learning to recruit these muscles effectively can help you to look slimmer, support your overall posture and reduce back pain. Ask me for more advice on how to improve your core strength and stability.
Leave Your Ego Behind
I know someone who did his back in while training recently and admitted that his ego was the cause of it. Appreciate where you are, know that we all start somewhere and progress is still PROGRESS. With good foundations you can build a skyscraper but not before. The body (and life) is much the same; one must progress in stages. Too early and the supporting structure may fail us.
After exercise, you will need to stretch out to allow the muscles to return to their normal length. If you don’t, you could possibly land yourself an injury. Without flexibility, your muscles could pull or tear during fast paced, or explosive movements. Yoga is fantastic for realigning the body, correcting imbalances and built up tension, as well as reducing stress.
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