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(HealthDay News) — Strength training with weights may help your muscles and overall health. But it’s important to train safely and wisely.

The Harvard Medical School offers these tips:

  • Take five to 10 minutes before your workout to walk around and warm up. After working out, cool down with gentle stretching.
  • Pay more attention to your form than the weight you are lifting. Move slowly with proper alignment and technique.
  • Count to three as you raise and lower each lift to make sure you are lifting at an appropriate tempo. Exhale as you lift, and inhale as you release.
  • Gradually increase weight to challenge your body.
  • Allow your muscles to rest for at least 48 hours between workouts.

— Diana Kohnle

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