How To Stay Safe During Bodybuilding Workouts?

stay safe_bodybuilding workouts_c

Are you using potentially dangerous exercises in your workout?

You have to be very careful with strength training equipment because it may not be the most effective or functional available.

How do you know that the exercises you are performing are safe?

Check below some potentially dangerous exercises with suggestions on how they should be done correctly or avoided completely.

Bodybuilding by weightlifting if done wrongly is a sure recipe for injuries. Sometimes, even painful and permanent injuries will derail your bodybuilding program.

This article will address the common injury prone mistakes bodybuilders make in their quest to build a fit and muscular body and how to avoid those weightlifting injuries.

Many people who exercise in gyms complain about backaches and they blamed it on their desk bound jobs sitting in front of the computer at long stretches of time. Perhaps they are right.

Then why is it that more bodybuilders have backaches when compared to their non-gym going colleagues?

Aren’t those people who lift weights are supposed to have stronger back muscles to support their musculature and should be less prone to backaches?

Perhaps you are getting the drift. Many bodybuilders suffer from common weightlifting injuries that they don’t even know it.

Many people actually think that if they do not suffer any pain when they are lifting weights, they are not injured.

This bodybuilding myth must be debunked right now. You see, many weight lifting injuries are very often sustained over a period of time.

It is because of the wrong weightlifting form being repeated over and over through many training sessions that cause the wear and tear of joints, tendons, cartilages and muscles.

Many injuries do not just occur immediately or overnight like the weights dropping on your toes or painful muscle tear during your lifts.

Therefore, executing your weightlifting movements in the correct form and techniques not only help your muscles to grow big and fast, it is also crucial to prevent bodybuilding injuries.

Common causes of injuries can also be attributed to lifting weights that are too heavy or that the bodybuilder who may be sick.

And yet, headed for the gym when his condition is not optimum for handling the weight he usually lift as he is in a physically weakened state.

So when the weights are too heavy or you are too weak to lift the weights you usually do, you are forced to cheat by swinging the weights up using momentum and lowering the weights by using gravity.

These movements not only waste your time in the gym as they are definitely not helpful in helping you build muscles. They will cause injuries.

An example of a common exercise done in the wrong form and a recipe for injuries is the common bar bell curl.

Barbell Biceps Curl – This exercise is perhaps the most commonly executed in the wrong form and causing injuries that people don’t even know why they are injured.

In every gym, you will see people swinging their barbells with their body rocking thru and fro in the movements.

The rocking movement places tremendous stress on the shoulder joint which is the most unstable joint in the human body and the lower back.

Over time, the shoulder joints and lower back will pay a heavy price for the wrong form and technique used during the lift.

Other common bodybuilding exercises which are often wrongly executed are the lat pull down, bench press, leg extension, military press and list goes on.

bodybuilding_strength training_prcvir

Common Bodybuilding Weightlifting Injuries

Sit-up

Traditional abdominal exercises such as the sit-up, incline sit-up and hip-raises are exercises that are used to train the obliques and the upper and lower abdominals.

They are performed by first anchoring the feet on an abdominal board which prevents you from sliding back then raising your shoulders up towards your feet, tensing your abs at the top of the movement.

Slowly lowering your shoulders back down and then completing the movement again.

The dangers of performing this movement are the shearing forces on the vertebrae and spinal discs when you have a flexed and rounded spine.

In this position, the pressure is mostly placed on a very small area of the disc area, which can cause small ruptures.

The safest and most productive way to train the abs is to use the brace and hollow technique.

This is a basic isometric exercise that helps strengthen the abs and the muscular girdle around your waist.

Pec Deck

The pec deck is an exercise that trains the chest (pectorals) and shoulder (front deltoid) muscles.

This exercise is performed by sitting at the machine with your back flat against the back pad.

Placing your forearms on the padded levers and position your upper arms parallel to the ground.

Pushing the levers slowly together and squeezing your chest muscles at the end of the movement. Return slowly to the starting position.

This exercise is potentially dangerous because it places the shoulder into one of its least stable positions, the dislocation position.

Because of the extreme position when performing this exercise at the starting position it can also cause tearing of the ligaments and injury to the rotary cuff tendons.

More effective and less dangerous is the bench press, keeping the arms at shoulder width and exercising in the strongest range of motion (partial reps) and the parallel bar dip with the elbows out.

Behind the Neck Press

This exercise trains the neck (traps) and shoulder (deltoid) muscles and is performed by placing a loaded barbell onto your upper back just above the trap muscle.

This exercise is done by standing with your feet about shoulder width apart. Place your hands on the bar about three inches wider than the width of your shoulders.

Push the bar overhead to arm’s length, holding and then slowly lowering back down to your shoulders.

This exercise can also be done seated. Try performing it in a smith machine or power rack for added safety.

This is a workout that places the shoulder joint into the dislocation position and the range of motion puts unnecessary stress on the rotator cuff tendons of the shoulders.

Many trainees may experience injuries from this behind-the-neck movement. It is the same with stick with dips and bench presses for your shoulder work.

Dead Lift

The dead lift is a compound movement that works the hips, lower back and also exercises the hamstrings and glutes (buttocks).

You can perform the dead lift by approaching a loaded barbell and taking a stance about as wide as your shoulders.

Grip the bar so that the arms are slightly on the outside of your thighs. Your feet should be pointing straight forward with the shins about two to three inches from the bar.

Heave the load upward using the hips and lower back keeping the back straight and the bar as close to the shins as possible.

At the top of the movement, hold for a few seconds and then lower the bar to the starting position.

The exercise has a knock-on growth effect on the whole body when worked hard. The problem with the lift is that if the spine becomes rounded during the lift it then becomes dangerous. Because of the forces working on the vertebrae and the spine injuries may occur.

A lot of these problems can be solved by keeping the back as straight as possible during the lift and keeping the bar held close to the body during the lift as the forces are then not that excessive.

Leg Extensions

Leg extensions are arguably one of the most popular leg exercises for strengthening the quadriceps (thigh) muscle.

These are done by using a leg extension machine and sitting in the seat with your feet hooked under the padded lever.

Raise the weight with your legs until they are pointing straight out in front of you.

Hold briefly, and then slowly lower the weight back to the starting position.

Leg extensions are a potentially dangerous exercise because when only the shin is in motion, the exercise draws the patella back onto the femur increasing joint compression forces, which can damage the connective tissue and the ligaments supporting the knee joint.

It can also cause anterior knee pain so people with existing knee problems may aggravate them by doing this exercise.

For greater safety and equal effectiveness, try doing the Squat, Leg Press, and Lunge for safer and more functional use.

Prevention is better than cure, so avoid bodybuilding injuries by having proper warm ups before exercising and use correct form and techniques when training with weights.

doctor_first aid

First Aid Treatment for Bodybuilding Injuries

Below are the immediate first aid treatments you will need to recover from a bodybuilding induced injuries.

That is assuming that the injuries sustained are not too serious that need immediate medical attention.

Okay, so sometimes bodybuilding exercises hurt. But how do you know when it’s a good hurt or a bad hurt?

The good hurt tends to occur after a bodybuilding workout and feels like a dull ache in the muscle or commonly called the “delayed onset muscle soreness” (DOMS).

This type of ache usually indicates that you have been working on that particular muscle hard enough and is a response to the effectiveness of your weight lifting workout although not always necessarily so.

The bad hurt, which generally signifies an injury, is usually sharp pain and the pain comes from a specific spot like in a specific joint or muscle spot.

It usually starts as an uncomfortable feeling, which you think will go away. Next thing you know, you are in full-blown pain! What to do next?

Treat bodybuilding injuries with “RICE”

The acronym RICE is for the general treatment of minor weightlifting injuries such as sprains, joint pains, tendonitis, pulled ligaments and so on.

R = Rest

I = Ice

C = Compression

E = Elevation

Rest

Avoid all activities that aggravate your injury. You may even need to skip your gym workout for a couple of weeks.

Rest can mean the difference between a long recuperation and possibly medical invasive procedures or just a few days or a few weeks off.

Ice

Ice helps reduce swelling by restricting blood flow. 15–20 minutes, three to four times a day is recommended as long as the pain remains.

Compression

Put pressure on the injured site to help keep swelling down. You want to wrap a bandage or a towel tightly enough to feel some pressure but not enough to cause numbness or affecting blood circulation.

Elevation

Elevate the injured area to reduce swelling.

Your condition should improve with “RICE” treatment. Most of the time, you should see some results within 20 minutes of treatment.

However, if the pain persists or gets worse, then it time to see your doctor or a sports physician as your condition may be worse than what was initially thought to be.

Hence, the next time when you have backache or joint pain, don’t blame it on other causes if you are a bodybuilder and that you lift weights often.

Just reflect on the weightlifting exercises you are doing and examined them as to whether they are the cause of your injuries.

Better yet, hire a personal trainer or a bodybuilding book with picture illustration and description to learn how to lift weights in the correct form and technique to prevent common and serious weight lifting injuries.

 

stay safe in bodybuilding workouts_q

19 Common BodyBuilding Training Exercises

Are you familiar with the training exercises for bodybuilding? Let’s take a look at just some of the most common exercises and routines so you better understand the different techniques used within weight training and overall fitness.

 

BodyBuilding Exercises

 

Here are a few of the more common ones:

 

1. Dumbbell Bench Press

Sit on the edge of a flat bench with the dumbbells resting on your knees.  In one smooth motion, roll onto your back and bring the dumbbells up to a position slightly outside and above your shoulders.  Your palms should be facing forwards.

Bend your elbows at a ninety-degree angle with your upper arms parallel to the ground.  Press the weights up over your chest in a triangular motion until they meet above the centerline of your body.

As you lift, concentrate on keeping the weights balanced and under control.

Follow the same path downward.

 

 

2. Standing Military Press

For this exercise, you will use a barbell.  Stand with your legs about shoulder width apart and lift the barbell to your chest.  Lock your legs and hips and keep your elbows in slightly under the bar.  Press the bar to arm’s length over your head.

Lock your legs and hips and keep your elbows in slightly under the bar.  Press the bar to arm’s length over your head.

Lower the bell to your upper chest or your chin depending on which is more comfortable for you.

This exercise can also be performed with dumbbells or seated on a weight bench.

 

3. Lying Tricep Push

Sit on a flat bench holding a curl bar with an overhand grip.  Lie back so that the top of your head is even with the end of the weight bench.  As you are lying back, extend your arms over your head so that the bar is directly over your eyes.

As you are lying back, extend your arms over your head so that the bar is directly over your eyes.

Keep your elbows tight and your upper arms stationary throughout the exercise.

The biggest key to this exercise is keeping your upper arms in a fixed position.

Slowly lower the bar until it almost touches your forehead.  Press the bar back up in a slow, sweeping arc-like motion.  At the finish, lock your elbows completely.

 

4. Side Lateral Dumbbell Raise

Stand upright with your feet shoulder-width apart and your arms at your side.  Hold a dumbbell in each hand with your palms turned toward your body.

Keep your arms straight and lift the weights out and up to the sides until they are slightly higher than shoulder level.

Then slowly lower them back down to your side again.

Keep your palms turned downward as you lift the dumbbells so that your shoulders rather than your biceps do the work.

Make sure you are lifting the dumbbells up rather than swinging them up.  Don’t lean forward while doing this either or you risk injury to your back.

 

5. Preacher Curls

This exercise is best done with a special preacher curl bench, but you can do this without it with a little modification.

Sit at the end of the weight bench, and place something such as a firm pillow or a few pillows under your armpits on your lap.  Hold the curl bar in your hands with palms facing upward.

Don’t hunch over the pillow, sit as straight as you can.

Using a shoulder-width grip, grasp the bar in both hands.  Curl the bar upward in an arc.

Be careful not to swing or rock to get the bar moving.  You need to be using your muscles to lift the weight, not momentum.  The goal of this exercise is to work the biceps.

Bring the bar up to your chin keeping in mind that the resistance is greatest during the beginning of the lift.  Lower the bar slowly working the muscle on the way down as well.

You can also do this with dumbbells or work one arm at a time.

 

 

6. Seated Dumbbell Curl

Sit at the end of a bench with your feet firmly on the floor.  Keep your back straight and your head up.

Start with the dumbbells at arm’s length with your palms facing in.

Curl the weight up and twist your wrist once they pass your thighs.

Squeeze your biceps at the top and then slowly lower the weight.

Do not swing the dumbbells down; lower them as you are working those muscles!

You can do this standing, but the seated position prevents bad form.

 

7. One-Arm Dumbbell Row

Start with your right foot flat on the floor and your left knee resting on a flat bench.

Lean forward so that you’re supporting the weight of your upper body with your left arm on the bench.

Your back should be flat and almost parallel with the floor.

Reach down and pick up a dumbbell with your right hand.  Your left arm should be locked at the elbow so it will support the weight of your upper body.

Before starting, look straight ahead instead of at the floor so you can keep your back straight.

Tighten your abs to keep your body from turning to the side as you lift the dumbbell.

Concentrate on pulling your elbow back as far as it can go.  The dumbbell should end up roughly parallel with your torso.

After you’ve rowed the dumbbell up as far as you can slowly lower it back to the starting position.  Switch arms after one set.

 

8. Dumbbell Shrugs

Stand straight up with your feet at shoulder width.  Hold two dumbbells with your arms hanging at your sides.

Droop your shoulders down as far as possible.  Raise your shoulders up as far as you can go then slowly return to the starting position.

You can also rotate your shoulders by going up in a circular motion from front to back and then back down again.  This can also be done holding a barbell.

 

9. Standing Calf Raises

This can be done with a specific machine found in a gym, or adapted for use without the machine.  Stand up against a wall with your body facing the wall and your palms down on the wall and your feet flat on the floor.

Keep your body straight and slowly lift up your heels until you are standing on the tips of your toes.  Hold the contraction briefly then slowly return to the starting position with your feet flat on the floor.

 

10. Crunches

Lie flat on your back with your feet flat on the ground, or resting on a bench with your knees bent at a 90-degree angle. If you are resting your feet on a bench, place them three to four inches apart and point your toes inward so they touch.

Place your hands lightly on either side of your head keeping your elbows in. Don’t lock your fingers behind your head!

Push the small of your back down in the floor to isolate your abdominal muscles. Begin to roll your shoulders off the floor.

Continue to push down as hard as you can with your lower back.

Your shoulders should come up off the floor only about four inches, and your lower back should remain on the floor. Focus on slow, controlled movement – don’t cheat yourself by using momentum!

 

 

11. Dumbbell Hammer Curls

With a dumbbell in each hand, stand with your arms hanging at your sides, and palms are facing each other. Keep your elbows locked into your sides.

Your upper body and elbows should remain in the same place during the whole lift.

Keep your elbows locked into your sides. Your upper body and elbows should remain in the same place during the whole lift.

Keep your palms facing each other, curl the weight in your right hand up in a semi-circle toward your right shoulder. Squeeze the biceps hard at the top of the lift and then slowly lower.

Do not turn your wrists during this lift! You can also do one arm at a time and/or alternate.

 

12. Incline Dumbbell Press

Sit on the edge of an incline bench set at about a 45-degree angle. Pick up a dumbbell in each hand and place them on your thighs.

Then, one at a time raises them up to your shoulder level while you press your back and shoulders firmly against the bench.

Press the weights back up to a point over your upper chest, with your palms facing forward. Lower the weights slowly. Inhale as you lower the weights and exhale as you lift.

 

13. Barbell Squat

Rest a barbell on the upper portion of your back, not your neck. Firmly grip the bar with your hands almost twice your shoulder width apart.

Position your feet about shoulder width apart and your toes should be pointing just a little outward with your knees in the same direction.

Keep your back as straight as possible and your chin up bends your knees and slowly lower your hips straight down until your thighs are parallel to the floor.  Once you reach the bottom position, press the weight up back to the starting position.

Once you reach the bottom position, press the weight up back to the starting position.

Don’t lean over or curve your back forward! You can use a belt to help reduce the chance of lower back injury. You can put your heels on a 1-inch block to further work the quads. You can also use a wider stance to work the inner quads even more.

You can also use a wider stance to work the inner quads even more.

 

14. Upright Barbell Row

Stand upright and grasp a barbell with your hands about shoulder-width apart. Let the bar hang straight down in front of you. Keep your body and wrists straight. Pull the bar straight up towards your chin, keeping it close to your body.

Keep your body and wrists straight. Pull the bar straight up towards your chin, keeping it close to your body.

Concentrate on either pulling with your traps or the front of your shoulders, depending on what you want to work most. Lower slowly to the starting position. Don’t cheat by leaning forward or backward. Don’t swing!

 

15. Front Dumbbell Raise

Stand with a dumbbell in each hand, palms facing backward. Your feet should be about shoulder-width apart. Maintain a slight bend in your elbows throughout the exercise so that your arms are straight, but not quite locked.

Lift the weight in your left hand in front of you in a wide arc until it is slightly higher than shoulder height.

With a smooth, controlled motion, lower the weight while simultaneously lifting the weight in your right hand, so that both arms are in motion at the same time.

Do not cheat by swinging or leaning backwards! This lift can also be done with two dumbbells at the same time or a barbell.

 

 

16. Stiff Leg Barbell

Place a barbell on your shoulders. Keep your head up and your back completely straight.

Bend at your waist with your legs locked, until your upper body, is parallel to the floor.

Return slowly to the upper position. This can also be done with your knees slightly bent.

 

17. One Leg Barbell Squat

Use a 12 to 18-inch box or bench for this exercise – the higher the box, the more difficult the exercise. Place a barbell behind your head at the base of your neck. Grasp the barbell with both hands with a wider than shoulder width grip.

Stand approximately 2 to 3 feet from the box and turn so that the box is directly behind you. Reach one foot back and place your toe on the box.

Keep your opposite foot flat on the floor and point your toes forward. Stand up straight. Keep your back tight and your chest out throughout the entire exercise.

Keep your head and neck in line with your torso so that you are looking forward. Your shoulders should be directly over your front foot.

Keeping your front foot flat on the floor, sit your hips back (like you are going to sit in a chair), bend your knee (of your front leg), and lean forward slightly at the waist.

Lower your body in a controlled fashion until your thigh (of your front leg) is parallel to the ground.

If you have difficulty lowering yourself down this far, lower yourself until the knee of your front leg is bent 90 degrees.

At this point, your knee should be directly over your toe, your hips should be sitting back, and your chest should be directly over the middle of your thigh.

Now, leading with your head and chest, raise yourself by pushing your hips slightly forward and up toward the ceiling, and straightening your leg. Return to the starting position.

At this point, your shoulders should be directly over the front foot.

 

18. Lunges

Place a barbell on your upper back. Lift your chest up and look straight ahead. Position your right leg forward in a long stride.

Your foot should be far enough in front of you so that when you bend your right knee, your thigh, and lower leg form a right angle.

Slowly bend your knees, lowering your hips so your rear knee just clears the floor. Pause briefly in this position, then slowly straighten your legs and raise your body back up to a standing position.

Complete a full set, then switch legs and repeat, or alternate legs for each rep.

Make sure your knee does not travel past your toes in the down position! This can also be done with dumbbells in each hand instead of using a barbell.

 

19. Barbell Tricep Extension

Hold a barbell with hands a little closer together than shoulder width. Lie on an incline bench and position your head at the top.

Press bar overhead to arm’s length. Lower the bar in a semicircular motion behind your head until your forearms touch your biceps.

Keep your upper arms close to your head. Return to the starting position. This can also be done with the straight bar, 2 dumbbells, seated or standing or with 2 dumbbells and your palms facing in.

 

Download here a free PDF copy of 19 common bodybuilding training exercises.

 

prcvir