Safety Tips for Weightlifting

Safety Tips for Weightlifting

Lifting weights in the local gym may be generally safe, but only if you’re mindful about what you’re doing and you don’t ignore the safety rules.

If you’re blasé about the rules, though, then the danger increases. In fact, a lot of the accidents and injuries that occur in the gym involve the weights. This is particularly true about the barbells, which is why the safety rules generally include having a spotter around to assist you.

But if you do follow these safety tips, then you significantly reduce the risk of an accident:

For Free Weights

Let’s start with the free weights, which include the barbells and the dumbbells.

Maintain Proper Form

You might think that maintaining proper form is only important when you’re doing your exercises. But the rule also applies to anything that involves lifting something heavy in the gym. These activities include lifting a barbell or a dumbbell off the rack, and lifting a weight plate off the weight tree.

If you’re like most people, then you probably just bend from your hips to pick things up. But you can’t just think of it as lifting a plate from the dinner table. This way leads to lots of injuries, especially to your lower back.

Instead, get in close to what you want to lift, and bend from your knees. That should reduce the risk of injury.

Be Mindful

You can’t be nonchalant about lifting at any time. That starts with using two hands to hold the heavier plates. If it’s heavy enough to hurt you if you drop it on your foot, then it’s heavy enough to deserve both your hands for carrying.

When you’re carrying a dumbbell in each hand, keep your elbows slightly bent. This gives you better control.

And when you’re carrying a barbell, be alert and keep an eye out on where you’re going. This is especially true when you’re carrying that barbell while you’re making a U-turn.

Don’t Forget to Use the Collars

The collar is that device on the free weight that clamps down on the weight plate to keep it securely in place. If you don’t use that collar, then the weight plate might just come off. The plate can then roll into a wall mirror or just smash on your foot.

Don’t Just Drop the Dumbbells to the Floor

This is annoying for other people in the gym, as the noise can be startling. Plus, the dumbbells can land anywhere or they might roll, creating a safety hazard.

Let’s say you were doing a dumbbell exercise on the bench. This can be a dumbbell chest press or a chest fly. Once you’re done, just bring the weights to your chest, and then carefully rock yourself into a sitting position.

Return the Weights to the Rack Properly

The same mindset you use for safely lifting the weights off the rack is also what you need when you return those weights back. You can’t just set the weights back in place while you have your knees locked like you normally do.

Again, you have to bend your knees while you pull in your abs. Hold the weights close to your body before you release them to the rack.

For Weight Machines

This can be complicated, especially if you’re new to the machine in your local 24-Hour Fitness gym. If you’re a newbie, it’s best if you’re guided to its use by a trainer or an experienced gym rat.

Here are some basic rules:

  • Is there a seat belt there? If so, use it.
  • If a weight stack gets stuck, don’t stick your fingers in there. Get a staff worker to deal with it.
  • If the machine needs adjustments to fit you properly, practice making these adjustments. If you’re unsure, get someone to help.
  • Know what a machine is for, and use it only for that purpose.

Hopefully, with these tips you don’t become another statistic regarding injuries in the gym!

How To Lift Heavy Weight Safely

Category: Featured