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SportsMed News

How to Avoid 5 Common Workout Injuries

November 8, 2016

While some injuries are almost impossible to prevent, many common workout injuries can be  avoided.

Today, we will be covering five of the most common workout injuries that may be due to improper movements in your exercise routine.

Lower Back Problems

One of the most common injuries are those associated with lower back problems. These injuries are especially common in those working a desk job, before hitting their workout in the evening. The reason for this may be due to weak and inflexible hamstrings because many casual gym goers simply do not make these muscle groups their main priority during workouts. This creates a muscle imbalance and causes structural problems and pain associated with the lower back ligaments and muscles.

Thankfully, an easy fix to avoiding these workout injuries exists. Regardless of your workout routine, having muscle balance is imperative. There needs to be a balance in the training of both the agonist and antagonist muscle groups for each body segment. This means those suffering from lower back pain will have to focus on stretching and strengthening the back, neck, hips, glutes and hamstrings in addition to their usual workout routine.

Lower Leg Problems

Every activity causes an impact to our lower legs, whether it be the shins, calves and/or ankles. You’ll find that second to lower back pain, lower leg problems are a perennial issue that has often been left unaddressed. For example, more than 40% of running injuries revolve around the lower legs and could range from tendinitis to muscle soreness and even more serious problems like shin splints and stress fractures.

To avoid lower leg problems, it is best to perform a variety of drills, such as a simple jog and jumping on the spot with the balls of your feet before starting your normal routine. Never allow your heels to have contact with the floor at all times to prevent unnecessary impact radiating through your body during your warmups.

Shoulder Pain

The reason why shoulder pain is one of the most common workout injuries is due to the shoulder being an unstable joint. There is also an avid fascination and paradigm shift in youths towards building strong chests and shoulders without regard for their corresponding musculature on the posterior chain. This mistake can cost you if you are training frequently with heavy intense weight on your shoulders, leading to dramatic imbalances and instability.

To avoid one of these common workout injuries, mobility exercises are advised to be performed before intense lifting. This includes abduction, adduction, flexion, extension and rotation of the shoulders with a slight resistance.

Muscle Strain and Pulls

Muscle strain and pulls occur when a muscle is being stretched too far during exercise without properly warming up. To avoid this, always warm up and work your way to a comfortable level of intensity without a sudden change in pace. To further improve your mobility during your actual working sets, perform dynamic stretching during your rest time with a significantly lighter resistance.

Knee Pain

Finally, knee injuries are one of the common workout injuries for people regularly doing lower body workouts which include squats and other high impact activities like sprinting. There is only so much that you can do when participating in high-impact activities, such as wearing shoes with proper cushioning and warming up thoroughly beforehand. However, when doing low impact exercises, adopting a proper form is the best chance one has to avoid injuries and build up strong functional fundamentals.