5 Simple Ways To Avoid Injury With CrossFit Workouts
CrossFit has literally become one of the most popular fitness regimens in the United States. CrossFit supports functional movement in all its moves, this means that the exercises are created to mimic activities we do in everyday life and therefore can make you strong and able to deal with carrying your kids, lugging groceries, bending, sitting and all the other tasks that we engage in daily.
This is important because often times traditional workouts use what are known as isolated movements that only work single muscles, as opposed to functional exercises that train major muscle groups to work together. This is what makes us more functional and stronger in our daily life and can go a long way to helping us avoid injury as we age.
However, there are other injury concerns that also must be addressed to ensure a safe workout.
To the onlooker, CrossFit may look like an extreme type of workout that is guaranteed to lead to injury, but this is only true when certain precautions are not taken.
In addition, with so many people participating in it, it is very important to learn how to avoid injury. Below are five simple things you can do to avoid injury while doing CrossFit workouts.
#1 – Get Checked Out By A Medical Professional
CrossFit is a very challenging workout. It works every part of your body at the same time. If you have existing injuries, it is very important you check with a medical professional to ensure you won’t cause any further damage. You should get the all clear before starting this style of workout.
#2 – Always Warm Up And Cool Down
CrossFit focuses greatly on strength training. If you lack flexibility, you will be more susceptible to injury. That is why you must take the time to warm up before every workout.
Stretch your muscles so they are ready for the workout ahead. Improving your flexibility is a great way to avoid common injuries.
A cool down is also important as it can help with effective muscle recovery.
#3 – Work With A Certified CrossFit Trainer
If you are new to CrossFit, it is very important you work with a professional. Look for a gym in your local area that has certified CrossFit trainers. These trainers are experienced at working with individuals of all fitness levels.
They will be able to guide you and come up with a workout plan that will work best for you. They will also be able to teach you proper form and technique. This of course will reduce your chances of injury exponentially.
#4 – Get Plenty Of Rest
After a tough CrossFit workout your muscles will be taxed. In order for them to recuperate, you will need to ensure you get plenty of rest. You should never train 7 days straight without at least one day off, as this can lead to injury and will not provide proper recovery time for the muscles.
Always take at least one day off, a day where you do not train at all. This will help both your body and mind recover from such rigorous workouts and it will make you more capable of performing your regular workouts effectively.
#5 – Always Listen To Your Body
Your body is extremely intelligent. If something is wrong, it will let you know. If you are overdoing it with too much weight, your body will let you know, and when it does, be sure to listen and take heed.
Don’t push your body further than you know it can go. Leave the ego at home and lift at your level. Remember that with any strength-training workout, it’s important to know your limits, and scale CrossFit WODs to your ability, or you risk injury.
You should also stay hydrated during your workouts. When you are dehydrated, it can lead to cramping. Cramping can ultimately lead to injury. So make sure you always have plenty of water on hand.
Eating a balanced diet is also important. As stated before, CrossFit workouts are very tough. You need the proper nutrients to ensure your body can complete and perform throughout the whole workout and effectively repair itself after the workout.
Complex carbs work best before the workout, like oatmeal and berries or peanut butter on whole grain bread.
After the workout choose lean protein to aid in muscle recovery and to feed lean muscle mass with the amino acids it needs.
#6 – Leave The Ego At Home
Sometimes people let their egos override their common sense, and reach for weight beyond their capacity and fitness level only to wind up injured.
Don’t allow your ego to cause injury, remember that once you are injured you won’t be able to lift anything at all. Lift at your capacity and work towards bigger goals; everyone started at the bottom.