Exercise is something we can all benefit from. On top of helping us maintain a healthy weight, exercise can have many other perks including strengthening muscles, strengthening bones, reducing stress, boosting our immune system, strengthening our lungs, and keeping our heart healthy.
However, it is possible for exercise to cause damage to our bodies if we don’t do it correctly. This is something that you need to carefully consider when working out. Below are just some of the ways exercise can cause harm – and how to avoid this harm.
Exercising too frequently
Too much of a good thing is never healthy. When starting a workout routine, you need to incorporate days of rest – especially if exercising hard each time. If you don’t give yourself enough rest, you could start to develop injuries. If you’re quite slim, you could also start to experience unhealthy weight loss if you’re not able to consume enough calories.
It’s possible to exercise every day, but focus exercise on different body parts to give other parts of your body a rest. For example, when building muscle, some people plan a leg day and an arms day. Just be wary that you could still exhaust yourself without enough rest.
Ignoring injuries and health conditions
If you have an existing injury or a health condition, you may have to restrict yourself to certain exercises. There could be some forms of physical activity that only serve to aggravate an injury or condition, such as doing any form of jumping exercise if you have a fractured ankle or osteoporosis.
By working with professionals that understand exercise physiology, you can identify exercises that will keep you healthy without straining your body. This typically includes low-impact exercises like walking and yoga. Swimming is another low-impact exercise that is often recommended, although there may still be situations where it is not recommended such as if you have an injury that needs to be kept dry.
Not wearing the right gear
Performing certain exercises without the right clothing or equipment could be harmful. For example, you shouldn’t run in regular sneakers – running shoes are better for supporting your feet and are more likely to prevent foot and ankle injuries. Meanwhile, if you’re doing martial arts, it could be important to wear a mouthguard and other protective equipment when practicing sparring.
Make sure to invest in the right gear – particularly if you’re taking an exercise or sport more seriously. Do your research to find out what other athletes are wearing and try to look into the same clothing.
Not using the right form
There are some exercises that require you to adopt a certain posture and position. Fail to adopt the right form, and you may not only exercise the wrong muscles but you could cause strain to certain joints. A classic example is trying to do a deadlift without keeping your back straight – you’ll likely end up damaging your back by doing this.
A personal trainer or sports instructor can tell you exactly which form to adopt. Get into a habit of adopting this form early.