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Ask Cam

Carrying the load

March 10, 2009

Question:

Cam my man, sometimes when I’m working out at the Rec Center, I hear a huge grunt and somebody slamming weights down. Kind of annoying – or am I missing out on some technique I haven’t heard about?

Cam’s answer:

There’s an old gym saying that applies here, my buff buddy: “If you don’t know how to set the weights down, don’t pick them up.” In other words, slamming weights down isn’t really the best technique. Probably won’t hurt the well-padded floor in the Rec Center weight room, but it may hurt the ego of the weight-dropping guy if he knew what an amateur gaffe it is.

It’s a sign of a well-seasoned gym rat who controls the weights, whether free-weights or machines, both lifting and setting down. All actions should be as smooth and seamless as possible.

And have you ever heard the old saw about “No pain, no gain”? Well, a better maxim is: “No pain now, no pain later.” Believe me, a few decades down the road, you’ll be glad to have a full range of motion instead of knowing that you once could deadlift 400 pounds then drop it to the floor.

Don’t hesitate to ask any of the employees at the Rec Center about different workout techniques. They’ll be glad to help you hone your own exercise regime for maximum results or recommend somebody who can answer your specific questions.