You hear all the time that you should see your doctor before starting an exercise program. Whether it’s a new sport or intense workout program, that disclaimer always proceeds the workouts. You might not think you need to see your doctor, but there are good reasons to do it. Here are 3 reasons you should see your doctor before starting an exercise program.

Identify injuries you could make worse

Maybe you have suffered an injury in the past that could lead to arthritis or other long-term damage. It can be helpful to know if a particular training regimen could actually cause you more harm than good. A doctor can review your injuries, obtain an x-ray or other study and help you plan the best, and safest, exercise program.

Also read:
Work with a personal trainer when starting a new exercise program

Identify injuries that you can prevent

Whether you have suffered an ankle sprain or ACL injury in the past and want to prevent a second one, or you want to avoid suffering one of these injuries in the first place, exercise programs exist to help. Your doctor can offer suggestions to prevent these and other sports and exercise injuries and point you to a physical therapist who could teach you these injury prevention programs.

Also read:
Avoid injury when starting to jog

See your doctor before starting to lift weights or any new exercise program

Identify hidden problems that could kill you

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is the leading cause of sudden cardiac arrest and death in sports. Most patients don’t have any symptoms before their arrest, so they have no idea they have this condition. Seeing your doctor can help identify this and other serious medical conditions.

If you are starting a new exercise program, even if you’re healthy, watch this video to learn why you should see your doctor first.