Risks And Dangers Of Bodybuilding

(Last Updated On: June 20, 2018)

Risks And Dangers Of Bodybuilding

Did you know that bodybuilding can be harmful to your health, possibly your life? Read on to discover the facts about this popular pastime.

bodybuilding

If we were all honest, most of us admire the way some guys (and girls) manage to build up their bodies, and the fact is that most of us if being honest would love to be able to do the same.

Building your body is achievable for most people. But it does take commitment and many hours working hard in the gym. Added to that the strict diet needed to chisel and hone your body is a factor that puts many people off.

Bodybuilding makes you stronger, larger and more powerful. It brings with it complete body confidence, something that most of us would love to show off on the beach.

There are however some downsides to bodybuilding that can result in injury and potentially even death.

To safe guard your body and reduce any of these potential risks you need to pay close attention to your overall health as you build your body.

Bodybuilding Can Kill

risks of bodybuilding

A study carried out at Yale New Haven Hospital in the US during 2006 uncovered a direct link between lifting heavy weights and the sudden rupture of aorta’s in healthy young men. At least 10 young, otherwise fit and healthy men died this way that year alone.

Heavy lifting is defined as lifting 50% or more of your bodyweight. If you have any weakness or enlargement of your aorta, or maybe an undisclosed aneurism, the action of lifting heavy can increase blood pressure dramatically. This could can trigger lethal heart problems.

The study actually recommended that anybody who was considering heavy weight lifting should be closely screened for possible heart problems before starting.

Bodybuilding Can Injure You

bodybuilding injury

There is a tremendous potential for injury when lifting heavy weights. It places your body, in particular your joints, muscles and cardiovascular system under immense strain.

Bodybuilding to build muscle mass requires hard core lifting and as such repeatedly stresses your muscle fibres and joints.

Unless care is taken and the workouts and times spent exercising are varied, its all too easy to overtrain and effectively break your body down.

Most common injuries to bodybuilders are lower back problems. These are closely followed by shoulder and knee issues. 

One bodybuilder we personally know who has been working out daily for 30 years had to have 2 replacement hips by the time he was 56. This was almost certainly down to the strain and stresses placed on his body by repeatedly lifting heavy weights.

His son also suffered a nasty injury, again he is very experienced at weightlifting, he tore and displaced his bicep while performing deadlifts, this required surgery and a lengthy recovery.

Using the correct technique is absolutely crucial when lifting weights, to avoid many of the potential injuries.

Using Steroids And Incorrect Diets

Bodybuilders, especially those who compete are known to eat way too much protein in the desire for lean, defined muscle. There are some who deliberately dehydrate themselves or starve themselves in the days before a competition in the hope of maximising muscle definition.

Professional bodybuilders know how to do this safely. But for the majority of bodybuilders, it’s an unhealthy and very risky practice.

Diet is without doubt crucial to bodybuilding success. But you need to ensure that the balance is right with the optimum mix of protein, good fats and carbs.

The use of anabolic steroids as a short cut way to building huge muscles is widespread. 

risks of anabolic steroids

But the facts are that anabolic steroids can kill. Unless used in a very precise way (even then they have risks). They carry some very serious, potentially life changing risks.

Bodybuilders who have used anabolic steroids have found that they developed health problems.  These include heart disease, Blood pressure problems, liver and kidney damage, shrunken testicles, infertility, baldness and the development of man boobs (Gynecomastia). 

female bodybuilder steroids

In women the problem goes even further. In addition to heart, blood pressure and liver problems, they can develop deeper voices, grow excessive body hair and can even experience enlargement of the clitoris. So much so that it grows to resemble a small penis.

Many of these problems are irreversible.

Ignore Cardiovascular Exercise At Your Peril

It’s a well known fact that many of these massive bodybuilders are not fit at all. Sure they look strong and healthy, but concentrating on your chest, leg and arm muscles does not actually make you fit. 

bodybuilder doing cardio

To be successful at bodybuilding you need to be heart fit. 

Remember the heart is a muscle too and it needs to exercised.

It has to work overtime during strenuous exercise. It has to pump ever increasing amounts of blood around the body to feed the muscles with much needed oxygen.

Starving before competitions or taking anabolic steroids can make the heart weaker too.

Its easy to ensure that your heart is as fit as it should be. Ignore the weights 2 or 3 times a week. instead go for a run, a bike ride or a swim instead to keep it as strong as your other muscles.