In continuation of the last health tip I decided to take this time a closer look at “common mistakes made while engaging in strength and resistance training”.

  1. Failure to prepare
    Choose exercises specifically helpful to your particular training goals. Therefore plan ahead when starting a strength training routine.
  2. Choosing the wrong intensity
    No matter what the goal of your routine, whether you want to increase muscular strength or strength endurance (fatigue resistance) you need to place the right amount of demand on the muscle trained. The goal is to overload the muscle by using large workloads or through the number of sets and repetitions (work volume). Demanding less of your muscle than it can handle results in no or small gains. Too great of a demand can result in an incorrect performance of the exercise and expose you to an undue risk of injury.
  3. Ignoring the principal of “Super compensation”
    After overloading the muscle during strength training you need to give the muscles, ligaments and tendons the appropriate time for recovery. Too little time means the physiological adaptation (super compensation) to the training stimulus will not be complete (risk of over training). Too much time will lead to a reversal of the super compensation and a return to the level you started from. Typically we recommend strength training on 2-3 non-consecutive days per week.
  4. Too much too soon
    Successful strength training programs should be progressive in nature. As your muscle grows stronger and is able to handle larger work loads or work volumes you should increase the stress placed on the muscle if further gains are your goal. Ignoring the principal of gradual progression and starting to lift too much too soon can result in injury.
  5. Minimize the risks for failure and injury by:
    using proper technique when lifting, pulling or pushing a work load. Lift and lower the weight in a controlled fashion. Never “throw“ the weight!

    Synchronizing breathing and strength training. Remind yourself to exhale into the exertion part of the exercise, never hold your breath while strength training! Maintaining the proportionate strength relationship of muscles that oppose each other (work on the same joint in opposite direction, i.e. biceps and triceps: one flexes the elbow the other extends the elbow). If this relationship looses it’ s relative strength balance the risk for injury increases!

I hope these tips will make your strength training safer and more effective.

In good health,
Hartmut Broring – M.S. Physio Therapy