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Article by Infofit

Gym Safety

Safely use heavy dumbbells and weights

Improper Use of Machines and Equipment Can Be Risky

You may think of the gym as a safe place but improper use of machines and equipment can be risky. Before a workout, personal trainers should familiar themselves with the machines and the particular gym safety protocol. Watch Andre Noel Potvin demonstrate how to safely pick up heavy dumbbells off the rack and/or floor before you begin to train with them or even after your second or third set when you are fatigued from your workout.

Always Maintain a Neutral Spine

Before you lift the dumbbell, make note not to round your back (always maintain a neutral spine), and find a secure position to place your hand on (i.e. dumbbell rack, knee, etc…) in order to brace yourself.

  • In a squatting position, grasp the dumbbell with the opposing hand and roll it towards yourself before picking up (dumbbell should be aligned under your center of gravity).
  • Keep your lifting arm straight as you rise with the dumbbell, then flip the dumbbell upwards using the momentum created by the squat, then place it on your knee. If you are using another dumbbell, pick the other up in the same manner as previously detailed.
  • An alternate method in preparing to move the dumbbells is to pick one up (as detailed above) and place it on a secure raised surface, then lift the other dumbbell separately.
  • Place the dumbbell down onto the floor in the same controlled manner you picked them up by bracing yourself, and using your legs (i.e. squat) to lower the dumbbell. Practice good gym etiquette and DO NOT slam the dumbbell on the ground!

By André Noël Potvin