Whether you have been exercising for a while or are just starting a new exercise regiment, your biggest concerns are staying safe and healthy. While exercise is great for you, it will do you no good if you wind up injured. There are many ways you can get hurt while working out, so it is important that you take care to be safe. Read on for seven tips for safe and healthy exercise.
1. Stay Hydrated
No matter where you work out, either indoors or outdoors in the heat, it is important for you to stay hydrated. You should drink water before, during and after exercise in order to avoid dehydration. You may not be thirsty, but you can often be dehydrated without realizing it.
2. Use Proper Equipment and Clothing
Many exercise injuries occur as a result of the failure to use proper equipment. Make sure that any equipment you use is in good working order and is the right size for you. You should always wear a helmet and protective gear when doing any sort of impact activity. You should also wear the proper shoes. Make sure your shoes fit well and offer the right support for your chosen exercise. You should also wear the correct clothing for the weather. If it is hot, you should wear breathable, heat wicking gear to avoid heat exhaustion. In the winter, you need to make sure you are wearing workout clothes that will keep you warm.
3. Stay Safe While Cycling
Cycling is one of the best ways to stay in shape, but if you have chosen this method of exercise it is important to use safety precautions as you will be sharing the road with motor vehicles. “Cycling accidents can cause a myriad of injuries, including head trauma, neck and back injuries, fractures, lacerations, as well as internal injuries.” says Jonathan M. Genish from Blackstone Law In order to stay safe, you should always use hand signals to alert drivers of your intentions. Never get in a vehicle’s blindspot, and follow any road rules as if you were in a car.
4. Warm Up and Cool Down
You may be eager to get started with your exercise routine, but you need to warm up and stretch before doing any sort of exercise. If your muscles are not warmed up and stretched, you can do mild to serious injury to your body. You also may not perform at your best. Start your activity with at least five minutes of warm up. A simple walk is great to get your muscles warm and your heart beating. Next, you will need to stretch out all of your muscle groups, with a particular emphasis on the ones you will be using most during your workout.
Once you are finished working out, it is not a good idea to stop abruptly. Take a few minutes to cool down with a light walk to let your body adjust and your heart rate to come down gradually.
5. Do a Variety of Workouts
If you do the same exercises every day or even every couple of days, you are running the risk of injury. You are overusing the same muscle groups and wearing them out. You will actually get better health benefits and avoid injury by doing a variety of exercises. As an added bonus, you will not get bored if you keep it interesting.
6. Use Proper Form
Whether you are running or doing strength training, it is important that you use the proper form to avoid injury. Talk with a trainer or expert to make sure you are doing the exercises correctly.
7. Don’t Ignore Your Body
If something is hurting or you are having trouble breathing, your body is telling you that you need to stop. Do not push yourself to keep going if you feel like you might have an injury. If you have a persistent problem, you need to see a doctor.
By making your health and safety a priority during your exercise routine, you can reduce the risk of injury. You can get the most out of your exercise and be on your way to a more healthy lifestyle.