Friday, December 21, 2012

Correct body alignment: Woman lifting weights

Lifting weights is a great benefit to women when done properly.  When lifting weights you need to pay attention to many different aspects to receive the results wanted without injury.

We talked about a few things earlier: Breathing, timing, using your body guide and knowing what you want out of lifting weights.  

If you missed that blog you can read that HERE.

Shoulders and knees are susceptible to injuries for women when lifting free weights.  Here are a few key thoughts to remember when lifting weights.

Lower Body:
When you do any weight lifting that requires you to squat down; i.e. squats never let your knees pass your toes.  


Start out with a good stance......feet, at a minimum, shoulder width apart (athletic stance). Remember to breath and count.  If it takes you to the count of three to come up than you need to slow down to the count of six.







If you are new to squats I suggest using the squat machine as this will allow you to learn the correct body stance while under the safety of the bar.  It also keeps the bar high enough that there isn't any strain on your back getting prepared for the squat.










No matter what you "see" in the gym never do a "full" squat where your body comes all the way down as this cannot be done without your knees passing your toes.




Upper Body:
I want to stress that upper body alignment is important when doing squats also.  When placing your hands on the bar keep them above your elbows (or one fist out).  


I gave the example of the bench press in the earlier blog so I'm going to use free weight shoulder press as an example here.  Sit on the end of the bench with feet forward and out to give yourself good balance.  Start with weights close to your body to lift up to the correct position; keep elbows in and slide weights up.  


Keep elbows horizontal with your shoulder and press up and together.  Remember to count and breath out as you press up.  Lowering the weights breath in and double the time it took to lift up.  Never let your elbows go lower than your shoulders.

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