In today’s largely sedentary world, most of us would benefit from moving a little more. However, it’s important to make sure the way you move won’t cause problems! 

At Dr. Louis Keppler and Associates, our highly trained providers advise most of our patients to exercise. Whether you have a chronic condition like arthritis, you’ve had a joint replacement surgery, or you’re recovering from a sports injury, chances are that getting stronger and managing your weight can help you. Exercise also offers numerous other benefits like improving your heart health, improving your mood, and lowering your stress levels. 

In this post, we present some of the signs that indicate you need to work on your form, as well as a few of the most common mistakes we see in our patients when it comes to exercise. 

1. You have shin splints (or any other overuse injury)

One of the most frequent complaints we hear from patients who have undertaken running as a form of exercise is that they have shin splints — that nasty pain along your shin bone. It’s caused by inflammation of the muscles and tendons and even the bone tissue of your tibia, or shin bone.It means that you’ve done too much, too soon. It happens to many people. You’re excited to start a new routine, and you want results. But it’s far safer and less painful to build up slowly—probably more slowly than you think is reasonable.It isn’t only runners who tend to do too much, too fast, either. You can just as easily try to lift too much weight when you’re new to weightlifting. You might also do too many repetitions of an exercise or fail to take an appropriate amount of rest days to recover.

2. You pulled a muscle

You want to get stronger, but a pulled muscle can force you to rest for weeks while you heal. It’s certainly an injury to avoid! 

Proper form, along with building up slowly, is the key to avoiding pulling muscles, particularly when it comes to strength training such as weight lifting. Working with a trainer for a little while to make sure you’re using proper form can be a great way to keep from pulling muscles. 

Even relatively simple exercises, such as squats, can cause injury if they aren’t performed carefully and with proper form. More dynamic moves, like lunges, or box jumps, need even more careful attention to form. 

3. You’re always sore

Some muscle soreness when you begin a new exercise routine is to be expected. You may also be sore when you ramp up what you’re doing a bit. However, if you’re so sore you can’t work out, or you’re constantly sore, it’s a sign of a problem. 

Muscle soreness should be temporary, and it shouldn’t stop you from doing your normal activities. The key, again, is to slowly build up and to take adequate recovery time. 

Talk to a professional

Before you begin a new exercise routine or ramp up your activity level significantly, talk to your provider at Dr. Louis Keppler and Associates. They may recommend you undergo some physical therapy first to make sure you’re strong enough for your new program, or they may tell you to go for it.We’re always enthusiastic about our patients exercising. It improves your mental and physical health, and when done properly, exercise can help you avoid future injury. If you have questions about how much or what kind of exercise is safe for you, schedule an appointment. We’re always happy to see you.

 Dr. Keppler is a practicing surgeon and member of the following organizations:

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