Gyms seem to be relatively safe places, we frequent them often and walk out the front doors without any complaints other then the normal soreness brought on by a hard workout.
But unfortunately for some of us we actually do not make it out of the gym uninjured, usually the injuries are nothing serious but can still really kill our workouts. Now the most common gym injuries are not serious but they still keep us from what we love. Here is a brief description of the most common injuries and how you can prevent them.
The first injury is perhaps the most common injury seen in the gym, it is a muscle strain, also know as a muscle tear. The thing to remember hear is that there are different degrees of strains, you can have level one, two or three, three being a complete tear of the muscle and the most serious. Level one strain is a very minor over stretching of the muscle leading to slight swelling in the area and very minor discomfort. Level two is more severe and usually is a severe strain with a tear but not a complete tear of the muscle itself. There will be severe swelling and soreness and pain will be elicited during contraction of the affected muscle. Now all of the levels can keep you out of the gym and all will take time to recover from, obviously the higher the level the longer the recovery time. The standard treatment is rest and physical therapy such as massage or physiotherapy.
The best way to try and prevent a muscle strain is to do a warm up set for each exercise to help warm up the muscle fibers and the surrounding connecting tissues. Also technique plays a key role when lifting weights, if you a putting you muscles under high levels of stress in weird angles this will increase the chances of a strain. Now the most common way muscle strain occur is when people try to lift more weight then they are comfortable with and swing the weights around, this can obviously be corrected by lifting only what you are capable of lifting.
The Other most common gym injury is a group of conditions, these conditions are inflammatory conditions brought on by repetitive strain such as a workout routing. These conditions are hard to avoid as they come about for most of us as a direct result of going to the gym regularly and putting our bodies under stress repeatedly.
The first in this group is tendinitis which is a very basic condition it is a inflammation of a tendon, the most common areas affected are the elbows and the knees. When it occurs in the the tendons of the wrist flexors it is called golfers elbow, when it occurs in the wrist extensors it is called tennis elbow. A very easy test to perform to check for golfers elbow is to put your finger tips under the edge of a table then try to push the table up while keeping your fingers under the edge, this will cause your wrist flexors to contract and if there is any tendinitis in the flexor tendons you will get a pain on the inside of your elbow. Now to test for tennis elbow just perform the same thing but this time put the back of your hand under the table and try to lift the table with the back of your hand. This will cause the wrist extensors to contract and if tendinitis is present you will feel a pain on the outside of the elbow.
Now the other injury in this group is called bursitis. Bursitis is an inflammation of the bursa, the bursa is a fluid filled sac that lies between tendons, ligaments and bones or basically anywhere that a soft tissue might rub against a hard surface such as bone. The sole purpose of the bursa is to reduce friction to help elicit fluid pain free movement, but sometimes due to over use and repetitive strain the bursa gets inflamed and causes pain, this is called busitis. It is basically the same thing as tendinitis but is the bursa instead of the tendon that is inflamed. This group of injuries can be absolutely devastating to a workout routine and can keep someone from the gym for weeks and may even return once the workouts re sum. The main way to avoid this group of injuries is to vary you training routine, try not to do the exact same exercises all the time, and try not to use heavy heavy weight all the time. You can even take a week and do lighter weights with more reps or even through in a few days off every couple of weeks, do these tips and you should be able to avoid this group of inflammatory injuries..
All the injuries mentioned in this article are completely preventable and can be avoided with the proper steps, so take the time and you can help to avoid down time from the gym due to preventable injuries.
About the Author: Andrew Mills webmaster of http://www.efitnessplace.com and http://www.doggies.ca