Success is Measured by Form
You’ve probably heard a lot of talk about getting your form right at the gym, and you may have even brushed some of it off. But proper form isn’t just a thing for fitness buffs and trainers.
Bad form can leave you with aches and pains, and even injuries, all of which can hold you back from reaching your goal – whether it’s weight loss, muscle growth, toning, or all of the above.
So listen up and take note. Here are 6 common exercises you’re probably doing wrong.
Let’s find out how to get ‘em right and look like a pro doing them…
6 Exercises You’re Probably Doing Wrong
Squats are one of the most common – and most important – exercises you can do. Whether you’re doing them with weights or not, squats offer a fantastic workout for your entire lower body, core, and even your back.
One of the most common mistakes I see with this essential exercise is looking down. It’s your natural instinct to shift your gaze towards the floor to maintain your balance, but doing so causes you to break form a little and arch your back.
To get it right, make sure your gaze is focused straight ahead throughout the move and as you lower your body make sure your knees don’t go past the front of your feet. To view this exercise, click here.
Pull-ups are one of the best compound exercises for your back and are awesome for toning your arms. Without a question they are extremely difficult and most people can’t do more than 3-4 but you have to start somewhere and I say go for it as the benefits you will get from getting better at them are as good as (sugarless) icing on the (fat-free) cake!
They’re also often referred to as chin-ups, but it would actually make a lot more sense to call them chest-ups. The main goal of a pull-up or chin-up should be to bring your chin past the bar so that the bar comes close to your shoulder and upper chest. To view this exercise, click here.
The lunge is second only to the squat when it comes to powerful lower body and core exercises. One of the biggest mistakes I see at the gym is an arched back. Once you stretch your leg backward, you have a tendency for your upper body to move forward.
The trick is to really focus on keeping your back straight. It helps if you tighten up your abs and core at the same time. To view this exercise with some added resistance, click here.
This one is one of the worst offenders in terms of form, and women and men are almost always running into the same mistake – going through the movement too quickly.
In order to really build the muscles in your chest you need to take this nice and slow and act as if you are trying to bend the bar towards you when lowering and vice-versa.
One other tip is to make sure you plant your feet firmly on the ground and keep them in position through every press while keeping your back flat on the bench. This form will give you a lot of stability. To view this exercise, click here.
Hip raises are a simple but effective move to strengthen your lower body and increase your endurance during other exercises. But many people have a tendency to let their knees fall outward.
Focus on holding your knees in place, and if you need to, hold a towel or cushion in between your knees during this exercise. To view this exercise, click here.
This last one on my list is another common body weight exercise, and one that’s probably essential to any effective workout plan. But it’s an easy one to screw up if you lose your focus. Besides keeping your back straight, holding your hands in the wrong position can totally strain your wrists.
The idea is to keep your wrists, forearms, and shoulders perfectly aligned throughout the push-up. One trick is to hold a pair of dumbbells against the floor or hold your hands against a workout bench for maximum stability. To view this exercise, click here.
For more tips on how to avoid the biggest workout mistakes, check out my 7 Stupid Mistakes to Avoid at the Gym.
Have any questions or feedback about 6 Exercises You’re Doing Wrong – And How to Get ‘Em Right? Please leave a comment below…