Strength training can provide an array of great benefits like it can help increase muscle mass, increase strength, burn fat and improve balance when done correctly. When you lift heavy weights incorrectly, it can increase the risk of injury and can keep you out of the gym. That is why it is very important to take time to make small progressions and working on proper technique and form above anything else.

Taking time to learn exercise form will lead to a better results, it forces you to use various techniques like moving through the full range of motion and different angle movements all to activate the intended muscle group. You may have done or seen at least one or two of these forms while visiting the gym.

Here are some common exercise form mistakes plus how to fix it so you can build muscle and strength safely and effectively.

  • Arching your back as your push overhead
    People often bend backward as they push overhead. This puts enormous and dangerous stress on the joints in your lumbar spine and can cause a serious injury. You have to squeeze your glutes and core as hard as you can as you push overhead—this will stabilize your lower back and help you push more weight overhead, safely.
  • Using arms during the kettlebell swing – A proper kettlebell swing is an explosive exercise that targets your hips, knees and ankles. Avoid using your arms to pull the kettlebell and never go overhead with this movement. It puts a lot of unnecessary strain on your shoulders.
  • Bad neck positions – It is very important to know where you will look when working out. Common mistake is when lifters look up at the bottom of a squat or look ahead when deadlifting to check on the form, or simply turn to the side to talk to their workout buddy. Doing this can strain your neck and tighten your body in so many ways, it can even cause a more serious strain to the cervical spine.  ack your neck by pointing your chin down slightly. It should look like a double chin. Keep your neck in that position throughout the movement. Remember, when doing almost any exercise your body should form a straight line, so make sure that your head and neck are aligned with the rest of your body!
  • Bad Posture on Cardio Machines – Stop hunching over when using the cardio equipment! “Cheating” with your posture not only causes back and neck pain, but it also promotes bad habits that can cause lifelong functionality.
  • Breathe! – Most people forget to breathe altogether or take shallow breaths which limits their oxygen intake and serves to tighten up their necks and shoulders.
    For strength training, exhale while you’re doing the hardest work, and inhale as you’re coming back to your starting position.

Always remember to focus on the exercise you’re doing and keep these mistakes plus solution in mind. If you want to improve your workout routine as a whole, you should also practive good strength training principles. It includes breathing throughout the exercises, trying different variations to target smaller muscle groups, having a proper warm-up and maintaining good posture. Always focus on improving your entire workout routine, maximize the effort youre putting and get the results you deserve!