Weightlifting sometimes gets a negative reputation for being bad for your heart, joints and health in general, is there any truth to it?
There are a few common misconceptions about weightlifting floating around in the popular knowledge domain about the negative effects of lifting weights. So what is the truth and what is just myth?
Is weightlifting bad for your health?
Weight lifting can be bad for your joints, but only if you use too much weight and use bad technique. I have weight lifted for many years and over those years I have heard many stories of injuries, however all of those injuries could of been avoided if they didn’t sacrifice their technique for the weight they were lifting.
This is almost always the fault of the ego, the gym can be a competitive place where one guy is trying to lift more than the next. Are you just going to try and out lift the guy next to you or are you going to focus on yourself?
Using poor technique can have serious long term negative effects on your joints. However if you use good technique it can have the opposite effect. Weight training strengthens the muscles around your joints which helps to ease pressure and wear and tear, reducing the chance of suffering from joint pain and problems in the years to come.
Sometimes poor technique comes from simply not knowing how to perform an exercise correctly. Any weightlifting beginners should always study up on the correct exercise technique for any exercise, and/or get help from a personal instructor.
Heart & Blood Pressure
Doctors once believed that weight training increased blood pressure, however this is now proved to be false. While it is true that weight lifting does increase your blood pressure during a heavy lift, studies now say that people who lift weights on a regular basis will benefit from lower blood pressure in the long term.
So is weightlifting bad for your health?
Only if you’re lifting like an idiot! All recent research suggests that correct and responsible weightlifting is good for your heart and your joints.
Weight lifting is actually one of the safest forms of exercise there is, and injuries are very rare and none serious if the correct technique is used. Running is actually far more damaging to your joints, constant impacts from running will make future joint problems far more likely.
If you have certain health issues like high blood pressure or a heart condition you should contact your doctor before starting a weightlifting program. This is because weight lifting will cause a temporary increase in blood pressure during a lift which could be dangerous. If in doubt get yourself checked out.