As gym owner I feel compelled to share this story with you. Many of us have spent a lot of years in the weight room and take things for granted.
I, for one... use a thumbless grip when I bench press. That's my personal preference.
There have been times when I have come off the rack with the weights and have pulled forward just a little bit too much. The momentum causes the bar to want to continue moving forward and with a thumbless grip that can turn into a disaster in the blink of an eye.BE CAREFUL YOU GUYS!
Remember, the devil wants to snuff your life out before you turn to Jesus.Jesus said: The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
– John 10:10 (KJV)Please read the following story. This incident occurred just two days ago, 25 miles from where I own my gym.Granville grad on life support after weightlifting accidenthttp://www.newarkadvocate.com/article/20100223/COMMUNITIES02/100223006/Granville-grad-on-life-support-after-weightlifting-accidentNEWARK —
A Granville High School graduate remains in critical condition at Grant Medical Center with injuries sustained in a weightlifting accident Monday, but his father is optimistic a small step toward recovery has been made.
Chris Harmon, 20, of Granville, is on life support at Grant Medical Center after the accident at The Advantage Club, 1845 W. Main St., in which the 250 pounds Chris was bench pressing slipped from his hands and landed on his face. A spotter was not present, Harmon said.
“Now he is still in critical condition, still on life support, but his face is moved around to where it should be,” Scott said Tuesday afternoon.
Chris had been scheduled for a nine-hour surgery Tuesday morning to stop his bleeding, but the surgery was postponed when it was discovered he had fluid in his lungs.
Still, doctors began reconstructive surgery on his face and were able to seal the bleeding arteries.
Chris’s nose is totally shattered and his jawbone displaced, Scott said. He will need to have titanium plates put in his jaw and both cheeks. His eyesocket will need to be rebuilt.
With that in mind, Scott said, the progress still is encouraging.
“I think he crossed one bridge. I think there’s many more to go,” he said.QUICK ASSISTANCE
The accident occurred after Chris had just beat his previous record for the bench press, topping out at 420 or 430 pounds.
While he was lifting that weight, he had a spotter assisting him, said Kevin Rowe, owner of The Advantage Club.
Chris proceeded to a decline press to bench 250 pounds when the weight slipped from his hands and landed on his face, smashing his cheek bones and severing two arteries.
Chris’s head was on a downward slant, which is why the weight hit him in the face and not the chest, Rowe said.
Advantage Club staff carried Chris face down to the ambulance, a move that Scott was told saved Chris’s life by preventing the blood from draining into his lungs.
“We are very fortunate that there were people in the weight room that knew what to do and called 911 quickly,” Rowe said.
An emergency medical ambulance transported Chris to Grant Medical Center because it had been too foggy for a helicopter to fly, Scott said.Support System
The family has received an outpouring of support from community members and friends, Scott said.
“All our friends, all his friends have been really supportive. Everybody praying and all the bodybuilders from the gym coming over and calling,” he said.
Chris is a Granville High School graduate who played football at Heidelberg College. He transferred to the Newark campus of Ohio State University after an injury and continued to pursue bodybuilding, which he has been doing since age 16 or 17, Scott said.
“That was his life, he was devoted to it,” said Patrick Hofer, a high school friend. “Rarely did he ever miss a day in the gym.”
Hofer now lives in New York but he graduated from Granville High School with Chris. The two played football together and spent hours lifting in the weight room.
“He’s a really good kid, we had a lot of fun together,” Hofer said.
Chris has been a regular at The Advantage Club for the last three years, Rowe said.
“We consider him one of our fitness family,” Rowe said. “He is a genuinely nice young man.”'Freak accident'
The question of why Chris was lifting without a spotter is unanswered for the moment, Scott said, as the family is foremost concerned with their son’s survival.
Having a spotter is a personal choice and The Advantage Club has staff members in the weight room to act as spotters if needed, Rowe said.
When Chris was benching the 250 pounds, he was using a Jones Machine, a machine with safety features for solo weight lifters, Rowe said.
“He was working with a weight he could easily handle,” Rowe said. “I can’t describe it as more than a freak accident.”
The Advantage Club has never had an accident like this before, Rowe said.
“What happened to him, it was a freak thing,” Hofer said. “He’s the strongest kid I know.”
The Harmon family is hoping to set up a trust fund for Chris soon, Scott said.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Chris and his family,” Rowe said. “This is awful for anyone to have to go through.”
Licking County Family YMCA Director Ed Bohren said Monday’s accident has prompted the YMCA to review its weightlifting protocols to make sure all safety measures are being taken.
“Any time there’s an accident or incident that’s close to home, you want to make sure that you are doing the right thing,” he said.
The YMCA has had no major weightlifting injuries, he said.
Harmon’s story shares similarities with a September incident in which University of Southern California tailback Stafon Johnson dropped a weight bar on his throat while bench pressing.
Johnson underwent several surgeries but has since recovered.UPDATE
Details on 10TV News HD Videohttp://www.10tv.com/live/content/local/stories/2010/02/23/story-newark-weight-lifter-crushed.html?sid=102