Weightlifting 101

“Weightlifting 101” is an intervention, I’ve seen too many rookie mistakes when it comes to weightlifting: a form of resistance training. Here contains everything I know about lifting safely gotten over two years through shame, pain, injuries and blood. Use this info well.

Weightlifting 101: Safety

Avoiding injuries in the gym should be a conscious effort except you’re a masochist…

Read why you should lift weights.

The benefits of weightlifting is lost when you sustain an injury, and this could put an end to your just starting lifting career depending on the severity, so how do you lift safely?


weightlifting 101

Warming up can mean jogging a few laps or doing lighter reps of your intended program, it helps dilate your blood vessels: increasing oxygen supply to your muscles,warming up also helps in loosing your joints(maximal flexibility) and getting your body ready for work by slowly increasing your heart rate. Don’t just go under a bench the minute you get to the gym, try dynamic stretches.

Know your weights

I once saw a 50kg man try to bench 90kg, now this is terrifying because, it was his first day, he was untrained and had no prior lifting experience, but he somehow taught he had the strength of Hercules and attempted the lift.

There are two types of weights; machine and free weights, machine weights are those big equipment that look like a giant refrigerator in the gym and free weights are dumbbells and barbells.

Knowing the type of weight you’re lifting and its safe range is important.

For a newbie try lifting 20-30% i.e. (if you weigh 75 kg bench around 30kg) of your body weight for most compound exercises.

Make sure you know the weight of whatever you’re lifting before attempting it.

Focus on technique

Heavy weights coupled with a bad technique are the fastest way to meet God.

Technique is the correct way a program should be done.

 I know you just saw a video of Arnold’s press but try it with a lighter weight, once you understand the range of motion involved slowly increase the weight.

For most exercise, it is important to keep your back straight, why? The back is a major injury site along with the knees and shoulders and any exercise done involving these sites should be done correctly to prevent a trip to the Physiotherapist.

  • Don’t arch your back while deadlifting
  • Cave not your kneels while squatting
  • Don’t overextend your shoulders during benching.

These 3 laws will keep you safe.

Clean up after yourself

No one loves a trail of sweat or the butt-shaped sweat print you leave on the benches, apart from being plane disgusting many diseases can be transmitted through contact with body fluids e.g. hepatitis b. Make sure you clean used benches, ensure you don’t make your gym bro uncomfortable by having an offensive body odour.

Use a spotter

Use a spotter

Let’s say you tried benching 20% of your body weight and you still came up short, without a spotter you’d be left with regrets and a barbell on your chest. A spotter checks for failure and steps in at the Knick of time to save you.

When unsure about the weight please get a spotter, it is better to be safe than sorry, before attempting your P.B make sure you have a spotter nearby.

Wear appropriate kit.

Would you wear jeans and a buttoned-up shirt to bed? Then why wear it to the gym, appropriate wears help your flexibility and makes your workout better, how would you explain squatting in jeans? Make sure you look and dress the part when lifting, remember special skins buff up your character.

Leave it to the professionals

use a trainer

Getting a trainer saves you from embarrassing moments, they make sure you do all of the above, it is a good investment to go for a trainer don’t be cheap.

Also, don’t start training someone because you’ve worked out for a month and can finally see your rudimentary abs, the only thing worse than a dead body is two dead bodies, in the classic case of blind leading the blind I’ve seen self-proclaimed trainers work their “clients” to extreme exhaustion.

Be humble enough to learn                                   

In summary, weightlifting done correctly will improve your health and body image, and if done wrongly will turn you into a hashtag #weightlifting 101