Imbalances, One side stronger than the other, Weak bodyparts, Things overcompensating? Does that all sound too familiar?

If so… Read on.

Ask yourself this – When I’m going to lift a barbell, dumbbell or use a weight machine. Am I carrying out pre-lifting checks?

If not, Why not.

One of the most common things I see within the gym is people not carrying out a correct set up when it comes to lifting.

They’ve not set their feet, not bothered about equal hand distance or grip or a number of different things.

Over time – This will lead to injury and could be seriously harming for your health.

9 times out of 10, If you’ve not got a Personal Trainer or a lifting partner, You’ll never notice it.

… But I do.

Let’s use a deadlift as an example – (If you haven’t noticed… It’s my favourite lift)

Before you lift that barbell, here’s some pre lifting checks.

  1. Are the weights on equally either side. Very important if sometimes you’re using no clips and theres a gap between the collar and the weight.
  2. Is the bar lined up exactly in between the rubber on the platorm, is there an equal distance between each end plate and the rubber on platform – If not, move it to suit.
  3. Are my feet hip width apart.
  4. Are my feet facing forward and not too far in or out the way.
  5. Are one of my feet infront of the other
  6. Is the bar pretty much touching my shin.
  7. Are my hands equal distance apart on the bar (I gauge by the knurling on the bar)
  8. Have I sat into the lift and my hip and lower back area are tight.
  9. As I lift and lockout when I come back down are both plates hitting the ground at the same time each side.
  10. Am I sacraficing form or balance at any point throughout the lift.

There’s 10 points – 10 checks that I’m doing before I even lift the weight.

Yes, Nowadays these 10 points are done within 10 seconds before the lift. But in the beginning I had to train myself to be aware.

I had to go through them in my head prior to the lift.

And it’s paid dividends and allowed me to lift with minimal injuries over the last 14 years.

Training is important – But staying injury free is most important.

Don’t be an idiot – Do your pre-lift checks…