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The following are safety guidelines for you as instructors as well for participants in your classes. It is recommended that you emphasize safety in all lessons you give. It is also your responsibility to inform your clients of the benefits and risks of the exercise they are participating in.
In this chapter we are focusing on guidelines for safe and quality workout. Along side technique a spectre of other factors also vital for success should also be taken into account. Among these there are mainly correct breathing, correct hydration of the organism and an appropriate diet. Without regarding the above mentioned factors the workout is incomplete, in some cases even harmful. This chapter should be read carefully for it is better to prevent then to cure.
TELL YOUR CLIENTS TO FOLLOW THESE SAFETY GUIDELINES:
- With each new workout programme start carefully and gradually increase intensity. Intensity is increased with a stronger elastic or a larger amplitude of movement.
- Exercise regularly (continually), do not miss/skip workouts.
- Pay special attention to protecting the spine and the lower back (the lumbar area), maintain a natural spinal curve and follow the instructions for individual exercises.
- Always work out as unburdened and relaxed as possible. Do not consume any heavy food approximately two hours before workout.
- Develop a correct technique of lifting - lift with a straight back so that the main part of the lifting is done by the legs.
- Watch out for correct hydration of the organism, always have something to drink.
- Watch out for appropriate footwear because every movement derives/originates from the feet.
TELL YOUR CLIENTS TO ALWAYS AVOID THE FOLLOWING:
- do not work out too intensively in hot and humid conditions,
- never hold your breath during workout,
- do not hyperventilate during workout or rest,
- never work out if you feel pain,
- never work out if you are ill or injured,
- do not perform exercises that are to hard or dangerous for you,
- do not sacrifice quality of the workout on account of quantity.
ADDITIONAL SAFETY GUIDELINES FOR YOUR CLIENTS (what to tell your clients)
Before starting this or any other workout programme consult with your physician that should assist you in determining your target heart beat, appropriate for your age and physical condition. Certain exercises or programmes may not be appropriate for all people. This is especially important for people over the age of 35, pregnant women and people who have had medical problems or problems with balance. Start slowly and advance by feeling. Advance in a manner most appropriate for you.
Do not overburden yourself with this or any other workout programme. Listen to your body and respond to potential reactions. You must distinguish between the good pain such as tiredness and bad pain that fells differently. If you experience any pain or uneasiness in your chest, irregular hart beat or a shortness of breath, immediately stop with the workout. Before continuing, consult with your physician. Be careful when stepping on or off the device. Place it on solid, straight floor that is not slippery. Wear proper clothes. They should be comfortable and light.
CORRECT BODY ALIGNMENT
The correct body alignment varies from exercise to exercise. However, there are certain general rules applying to almost all exercises. A stable body alignment largely assures a safe position if the correct technique of exercise performance is being used.Some general rules for the correct body alignment:
- keep natural spinal curves (explained further on),
- symmetrical position of the body that ensures balance of the body,
- weight divided equally on both feet: whole feet should be in contact with the ground,
- eyes focused forward, head as an extension of the spine.
PROTECTING THE SPINE
The spine is one of the most important structures of your body because most of the nerves pass through it which is vital for normal functioning of the organism. Therefore, it is worth protecting it intensively. Incorrect alignment of the spine, incorrect performance of exercises and doing exercises that are not appropriate for your level of physical preparedness are the most common causes of spine problems.
Injured or shifted vertebrae, strained longitudinal ligaments, compressed discuses, compressed nerves and ruptured muscle fibers are just some of the problems that can occur when principles mentioned in this chapter are not being considered. Research proves that incorrect body alignment burdens the vertebrae twice as much as a correct body alignment.BREATHING
In recent time people are more and more aware of the importance of correct breathing and how important it is to control it and use it to our advantage. Therefore it is advisable to give some attention to this area as well during workout. Oxygen is the basis for gaining energy in the body and the physiological need we cannot avoid.Some advice regarding breathing during workout:
In exercises for strength training consider the following: when lifting, pulling or pushing or when using strength, always exhale and when returning to the initial position, inhale. To be more precise: before lifting inhale and in the last third exhale. Always breathe calmly and keep a constant rhythm. Be careful that the depth of the breathing is proportional to the effort as dizziness appears easily. Adjust the rhythm of breathing to the rhythm of the workout so that it all becomes one single rhythm. Achieving such a way of breathing is one of important signs that you are performing the exercise correctly and with ease.
RE – HYDRATION OF LOST FLUIDS
Water is not a substance with energetic value for our organism, however it is indispensable for thermoregulation and the control of weight. According to research a lot of people drink insufficient amounts of water per day (according to RDA). A normal consumption of water for an adult is around 6% of body weight; this means that for an adult that uses 2000 kcal the minimal consumption of water would be around 2 litres, but when exercising it is advisable to drink pursuant to effort (up to 5 litres of liquid).
Water is the most important independent part of our nutrition as it is included in the majority of body tissues. It also plays an important role in regulating body temperature. The heat caused/produced by functioning tissues during workout is transferred to the surface of the body and to the environment. Sweat extracted through the skin thereby cools the body. We recommend 3-5 dcl of liquid, water or isotonic beverage 1 hour before workout.
After workout drink as you deem appropriate. If you do not drink enough liquid dehydration of the organism occurs which has very negative consequences. Research shows that when we sense thirst that means the body already lacks up to 2 % of body fluid (around 1-1,5 l of water) which means 20% lower functional capacity of the organism. Since the human body does not have the ability of adapting to water deficiency, dehydration is immediately manifested in the functioning of the body.
Dehydration negatively affects body functions in many aspects: reduction of muscle strength, reduction of the volume of interstitial fluid and blood, exhaustion of liver glycogen stock etc.
When dehydration increases the heart rate increases, the circulation of skin reduces, body temperature increases and movement becomes difficult and weariful.
So before sensing thirst you can already get tired, lose sense of fine coordination, get edgy, feel bad; there is also a large probability of cramps and injuries. SO DRINK!
Some general guidelines for correct hydration of the organism:
- Drink water a bit cooled for it has been determined that it absorbs into the blood most fast.
- If the workout lasts for more then 90 minutes use sport beverages for replacing used glycogen and minerals.
- If the workout lasts less then 90 minutes water is the most appropriate for replacing lost fluid