Exercise has tremendous benefits for your health. Your health and wellness will improve exponentially with a consistent fitness regimen. The more people that begin working out and continue working out, the more the general public’s health will be enhanced. Few would dispute these statements. This is why the gym becomes such a popular and busy place. People want to get healthy and, for more selfish reasons, look better to themselves and others. There is no shame to wanting to look and feel better. Exercise requires some serious physical demands on the body. The likelihood of injuries is increased simply because of the motions required to exercise. Add these motions to a public, crowded place, and the risk of injury is high.

The good news is that gyms, crowded as they may become, are regulated by safety measures just like any other building. Emergencies occur, and they are sometimes out of the control of the public. More times than not, unfortunately, these emergencies occur due to user error. Whatever the cause of an emergency may be, there are tips to follow to ensure your safety and the safety of those around you.

Emergencies come in many forms. Someone may sprain an ankle, or a man with diabetes may have a serious low blood sugar moment while exercising. A machine may malfunction, causing a fire to begin. Weights may fall off a rack after not being secured properly. You can imagine a thousand scenarios that could arise.

Safety tips for the gym also come in many forms. Your initial focus should be on the gym itself. Does the gym have a first aid kit? Are the staff members trained in CPR? Are there obvious fire extinguishers and exits readily available? Does the gym keep an automated external defibrillator (AED) on hand? Is the equipment regulated and kept up-to-date? More than likely, you can rest easy that the gym you frequent has followed these guidelines and the many others that aid in public safety.

The next step is to look in a mirror. Don’t focus on how great your workouts may be making you look, but rather focus on your form. Improper form during the movement stages of exercise leads to too many injuries in gyms. If you want to hurt yourself or someone else (hopefully nobody wants that), the fastest way to accomplish that feat would be to use bad form. Your muscles are meant to move the way they are designed to move. Moving them improperly can injure you, and when you add a fifty pound weight to the equation, you have just increased your odds.

So how do you get good form? It’s simple: make sure that someone shows you how to do an exercise properly. If you don’t know, ask. If you step up to a machine that looks like it belongs on a space station, don’t use it without consulting with someone first. Don’t ever be afraid to ask questions. Take your time with cardio machines, especially, as they involve momentum. This momentum could throw you right off the back of something. Maybe you’re a seasoned pro, and you’ve been working out for awhile. You want to test your bench press max. Don’t fly solo. Get a spotter, and please make sure that person can lift the weight off your tired body if you can not.

Common sense can go a long way in gym safety. Always be aware of your surroundings and think, “Is what I am about to do going to put anyone in harm’s way?” Follow all the rules set forth by the gym. Wear the proper attire and shoes. Don’t run near a pool. Don’t text on a treadmill. Don’t attempt to life too much weight by yourself.

Your exercise experience, and the exercise experience of others can be safe, fun, and enjoyable by using common sense, ensuring the proper safety measures of the gym, and using proper form. These are not the only safety tips inside a gym, but they encompass a wide variety of situations and results that may occur at a gym. Always be ready for an emergency should it present itself, but take necessary preventative measures and do all you can to make sure an emergency is not a result of something you may have caused.

As always, a safe gym environment coupled with proper individual safety measures during any workout will go a long way toward making sure all your workouts are enjoyable and fun. So go have safe fun!