In the world of cardio machines, you really have your work cut out for you. In using these things, you are expected to push your body and sweat a lot. However, all your workouts are always secondary to your overall health. Improper use or improper cardio machine selection can negatively impact your overall health and even physically hurt you if not immediately then in the long run. So, to help you out, here are some safety tips for using cardio machines.
Tips for Beginners
When you are starting out, you should always consult a professional or a health care provider if your planned exercises are going to be healthy for you. You may have certain conditions that can be exacerbated by your planned workout. It might be a good idea to do this even before you go out to select your cardio machine.
One tip in selecting your cardio machine is to try to factor in existing conditions that you may have. If you already sit all day, a stationary bike may not be the best of choices. This can lead to posture or back problems due to prolonged sitting. If you have bad knees, a stair master or step mill may not be the machine for you since it does place a certain amount of stress on your knees.
You should develop a pre-workout routine which should include stretching and warm up exercises. These are not meant to make you sweat, only to help your muscles prepare for the strain they will be going through in the workout. Many injuries can be avoided with proper warm-ups.
You never want to go beyond your level. If you start to feel dizzy or out of breathe you are most probably pushing yourself beyond your limit. If ever you experience this, slow down the cardio machine’s setting (if available). You should consult your health provider as well to make sure you are not suffering from any exercise-related conditions.
If you are a beginner, try starting out with 5 minute low intensity workouts. Keep timing yourself and as you get more acclimated to the activities, start increasing the length of time or the intensity. You want to work yourself up to around 10 minutes of moderate level workouts at a time. Your daily goal should be around a total of 30 minutes of workout so you can do three 10 minute sessions on your cardio machine a day.
Also, don’t forget to read the safety manual on your cardio machine. Often, people get so excited about the new machine that they get on it right away without the required information to operate it safely and effectively. Not only will you be negating your exercise goals, you can actually put yourself in harms way.
Never forget to drink before, during, and after. Water is one of the things your body is going to use up when you exercise. Studies show that almost 75% of Americans do not drink the appropriate amount of water. Try to drink 8-10 glasses of water daily.
Don’t forget to cool down after the workouts. Stretch one more time and try to gradually slow your body down from the activity.