When there is no trainer available to correct you, you are likely to do exercises using incorrect form. Read on to learn what are some home workout common, dangerous mistakes, & how to correct them so as to perform exercises correctly & safely.
Many people follow workouts virtual classes or videos. Whereas working out at home is a great option to keep you physically and mentally fit, it also opens door to injury.
With no trainer by your side to guide, you might do exercises improperly. Workout mistakes can on one hand make the exercises less effective – which is certainly not what you want after spending time on exercises, and on the other also involves risks of getting an injury.
These common mistakes are not unique to workouts at home – I usually see people in the group classes or gym using incorrect form. So, with no instructor or trainer to guide you, it becomes very important to make sure you are performing the workout moves safely and properly.
Top Most Dangerous, Common Home Workout Mistakes That You Should Always Avoid!
Whether you are exercising in a gym, at home on your own or taking live streaming classes, avoid these common mistakes to prevent injury.
1st Home Workout Common Mistake
Not Engaging Core
When performing core exercises such as Planks or Sit-ups, you need engage your core properly. The mistake that people commonly make is relying too much on other muscles, instead of their core, to complete the movement.
Following are some cues, which will show up when you are not engaging your core correctly:
Rounding, Arching or Dropping your back while doing planks or push-ups.
These mean though your doing core related exercises but are relying more on your back muscles, which will overtime lead to back problems. Another example is feeling off balance while doing leg exercise like sit-ups. This is another sign (cue) that indicates you need to work more on engaging core.
How To Engage Your Core While Exercising?
Here are the tricks that you can use to make sure your core is recruited properly:
(i) Pull your navel in towards your spine thinking as someone is going to punch you in your belly, and you are trying to protect you from that punch.
(ii) For standing core exercises, try to maintain a straight line between your tailbone & neck. Purpose is to ensure you are not arching your back; otherwise you will be overusing your back.
(iii) For performing exercise in lying down position on your back, remember that your lower back maintains contact with the floor. And if during the exercise, you feel it starts lifting up keep in mind to press your back gently into the ground.
2nd Home Workout Common Mistake
Using Quads Instead Of Glutes & Hamstrings
If you don’t see much growth in your glute muscles even when you have been doing exercises targeting your glutes – this mistake could be the reason. I usually see people committing this mistake while doing lunges & squats.
How To Focus On Glutes When You Workout?
Remember to do the following when you lift your body back into standing position a lunge or squat:
(i) Press down through your heels to recruit and activate your hamstrings.
(ii) Squeeze your glutes at the top position of each rep. While doing so be careful not to arch your back.
When you make conscious efforts to engage & activate the muscles in your glutes muscles, you avoid overworking your quads. If you perform squats by relying on & overusing your quads, you will be putting too much strain on your knees and the front of your legs. So always keep in mind squats or lunges are not meant to overwork the muscles on the front of your legs. Keep focus on your heels and glutes when doing squats or lunges.
3rd Common Mistake
Rounding Shoulders Forward
Using dumbbells or resistance bands is an effective way gain strength, tone your muscles and improve your posture. But at times people round or hunch their shoulders forward or backward while doing exercise with weight – and they even don’t realize doing it. This not only prevent them from getting the full benefit of the workout, but it’s also risky – because it puts a lot of pressure on their back that can cause injury.
How To Prevent Your Shoulders From Hunching?
To prevent this proper shoulder & spine alignment is critical. Here are the tricks to achieve this.
(i) Remember to maintain your chest up & out and shoulder back. Squeezing your shoulder blades together a little bit can help. You can also practice by standing in front of a mirror and adjust your posture.
(ii) Align your body to maintain proper posture by keeping your shoulders over the hips AND your ears over the shoulders.
(iii) If you are struggling to maintain correct form, switch to lighter weights. As the muscles you are working on fatigue, your body will tend slip into incorrect form and let your shoulders to round. Key is to first exercise with lighter weights so as to train your body to maintain the correct form before you challenge your body with more weight.
4th Common Mistake
Overdoing High Intensity Exercises
We all get over enthusiastic, which means you tend to gravitate towards high-intensity exercises and going beyond your body abilities. Whereas HIIT workouts do help burn greater calories and shed fat faster, but they also expose us to greater risks of crossing the limits. Done often without providing your body to recover, high-intensity exercises can cause extreme soreness and injuries.
Some examples of high-impact exercises are jogging, jumping, jumping squats, burpees etc. If your virtual or home workouts frequently involve these types of exercises, you are likely to feel worn down. These moves can be particularly dangerous for the people who are suffering from joint pain.
How To Avoid High-Impact Exercising Hurting Your Joints?
Here’s how to avoid high-intensity exercises turning into injury:
(i) Rest Day: Take at least one-day rest in-between high-intensity workouts to provide your body enough time to recover from high-intensity workouts.
(ii) Switch Up Workouts: If you did high-intensity workout today, do yoga or light weight strength training tomorrow. Varying the type & intensity of the exercises is necessary to allow your body to recover.
(iii) Listen To Your Body: If you feel pain creeping up in you back, shoulders, ankles or knees, don’t ignore it. An injury to any of these areas can sideline you completely. Therefore, if you are having joint issues, you should not continue any exercise that puts pressure or strain on those joints.
My advice to you would be you don’t necessarily have to do high-impact/high-intensity workouts. Your foremost priority should be protecting your joints by opting for exercises that are low impact, while still allowing your heart rate up!
About Author: Renu Bakshi, AKA Fitness Buffhq, is ISSA Certified Elite Trainer. He passed Personal Fitness Trainer Course, Nutrition Health Coach course & Specialist Exercise Therapy course from ISSA, USA obtaining + 97% marks. He shares his experience and knowledge about nutrition and effective workouts to get you in the best shape of your life, no matter how old you may be. The author says: “For me age is just a number!”