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Avoid Muscle Injury

By Pete Sisco - Developer of Static Contraction Training

A New Training Method to Avoid Muscle Injury

If you've been around a gym very long and talked to a few of the regulars, you'll soon discover nearly everyone, it seems, is nursing some kind of injury. Sometimes it's a recent pull or strain and sometimes it's a "bad knee" or "bad shoulder" from an injury many years ago.  The sad thing is these limitations never had to exist.

There are simple ways to avoid injuries and one of them is fantastically effective at building muscle. What? A safer way to lift that increases muscle building? Yes.

Avoid Muscle Injuries: Warm-up and Focus

First of all, before you do any heavy lifting you should do a two part warm-up. The first part consists of a general warming of the whole body by doing ten to fifteen minutes on a treadmill, LifeCycle® or similar cardio exercise. The actual time will vary depending on your age, level of conditioning and even the temperature of the gym.

A college athlete can warm up in five minutes, whereas a person who is 50-something might require 15 or 20 minutes to feel ready for an intense workout. Only you can subjectively evaluate when you are sufficiently warmed up. The object is to get blood flowing vigorously though the body and also permit you a few minutes to mentally focus on the lifts you will be doing and the goals you want to achieve.

Don't underestimate the value of "psyching" yourself before a weightlifting workout. Productive strength training comes from progressively overloading your muscles. That means today's workout needs to be better than your last workout. Like anything else in life, making improvement requires focus and a sense of purpose. Use your time on the treadmill to do both.

Avoid Muscle Injury: Specific Muscle Warm-up

With your whole body warmed-up it is time to move to your first weightlifting exercise. This is a revolutionary method to maximize the intensity of your workouts while minimizing the chances of injury. To get the most benefit and reduce the risk of injury, you'll need to warm up a specific way.

Use a weight that is one third to two thirds of the goal weight you will be lifting today. Lift this weight through only half the range of motion you normally would: the stronger half. For example, on the bench press lift the weight from your position of furthest reach to half way down, then back up. Avoid the lower half of the movement. Perform this muscle-specific warm-up for 10 to 12 reps.

These half-range warm-ups can be performed on virtually every common exercise. They are the perfect warm-up for the following strongest range partial repetitions.

All the best,