The Most Common Injuries in the Gym and How to Avoid Them

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The saying “no pain, no gain” has to be one of the most dangerous fitness myths out there. While challenging your body is great, you should always know your limits before you end up getting injured. But no matter how careful you think you are, it pays to be prepared and to know what you’re prone to as you step inside that gym. Because many of the most common workout-related injuries can actually be avoided.

Read on to find out more.

Neck Injury

Neck injuries can be a result of muscle overuse in the neck and shoulder area, as plenty of shoulder muscles are also attached to the neck. Some of the common causes of this are poor posture during low-impact exercises like yoga, or strains while doing crunches. Our advice —and this covers most injuries— is to be conscious of your techniques and posture while performing your exercises.

Rotator Cuff Tear

This injury is, by far, the most common form of shoulder injury that can happen from working out. Rotator Cuff injuries are often a result of strenuous, repetitive shoulder movements (like overhead lifting), which overloads the tendons, causing it to tear. The effects are immediate, and sports medicine doctor James Andrews warns that this is indicated when you feel a line of tension around your shoulders. This can be easily avoided by incorporating shoulder exercises into your routine or keeping proper form.

Back Pain

Back pain is a result of overusing the muscles surrounding the spine and is a common injury for those who exercise. Usually lifting weights that are too heavy for you causes this. If you’re not careful it can also bring about a chronic form of stress fracture called spondylolysis. This is why making sure you know how to perform exercises correctly and not lifting beyond your means is important. You don’t want to become one of the 164 million Americans that Maryville University predict will have a chronic condition by 2025 just because of incorrect form. Serious back issues caused by weightlifting will certainly add to this number. If you’re ever unsure, it is recommended to seek guidance from a professional trainer.

Wrist Strain

Plenty of exercises can cause wrist pain. For one, too many curls or push-ups can easily overload your wrists and its surrounding muscles. Rather than relying on weights to strengthen your wrists, Very Well Health recommend trying smaller exercises like kettlebell swings or wrist extensions with a Theraband, which come with different levels of resistance. Make sure to use one that is challenging enough but does not compromise your capacity to perform the exercise.

Sprained Ankle

A sprain is different from a strain. Sprains injure ligaments, while strains affect muscles or tendons. However, their symptoms are very similar. A sprained ankle causes intense pain in the joint, so much so that it can feel like a broken bone. Incorrect running form and overuse of muscles are key reasons for ankle sprains. One way to avoid sprains is to perform flexibility exercises before you train.

Of course, there are also those who are too eager to reach the fitness goals that they ignore their body’s limits. At the end of the day, it’s important to give your body the time to recover, and leave that “no pain, no gain” toxic mentality at the door.

An article by Relena Jane

Fitness expert.
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