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25 Exercises You Do But don’t know are killing you

by Thomasina Oseye
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25 Exercises You Do But don't know are killing you

When it comes to exercise, it’s important to prioritize safety and effectiveness. While there are countless exercises that can help you reach your fitness goals, there are also some that you should avoid.

In this article, we will highlight 25 exercises that you should never do, either due to the risk of injury or their lack of effectiveness.

1. Behind-the-Neck Lat Pulldowns

Performing lat pulldowns behind your neck can put excessive strain on your shoulders and neck, increasing the risk of injury. Instead, opt for front lat pulldowns to target your back muscles effectively.

2. Upright Rows

Upright rows can lead to shoulder impingement and rotator cuff injuries. Substitute this exercise with lateral raises or shoulder presses to target your shoulder muscles without the risk of injury.

3. Sit-Ups

Sit-ups can strain your neck and lower back, potentially causing injury. Consider alternatives such as planks or Russian twists to strengthen your core without putting unnecessary stress on your spine.

4. Leg Presses with Locked Knees

Performing leg presses with locked knees can lead to joint stress and potential knee injuries. Remember to keep a slight bend in your knees throughout the movement to protect your joints.

5. Smith Machine Squats

The fixed bar path of the Smith machine can alter your natural squatting pattern and put excessive stress on your knees and lower back. Opt for free weight squats to maintain proper form and reduce the risk of injury.

6. Seated Leg Extensions

Seated leg extensions can place excessive strain on your knee joint, potentially leading to injury. Incorporate compound exercises like squats and lunges to target your leg muscles more effectively and safely.

7. Behind-the-Head Shoulder Presses

Performing shoulder presses behind your head can strain your shoulders, neck, and rotator cuff muscles. Instead, opt for front shoulder presses to target your shoulder muscles without compromising your joint health.

8. Machine Chest Flyes

Machine chest flyes can limit your range of motion and put unnecessary stress on your shoulders. Choose dumbbell flyes or cable crossovers to engage your chest muscles with proper form and a wider range of motion.

9. Standing Toe Touches

Standing toe touches can strain your lower back and hamstrings if performed incorrectly. Instead, try exercises like hamstring stretches or Romanian deadlifts to target these muscles effectively without risking injury.

10. Donkey Kicks

Donkey kicks, where you kick your leg back while on all fours, can put excessive strain on your lower back and hips. Opt for exercises like glute bridges or hip thrusts to target your glutes without compromising your spine.

11. Behind-the-Head Lat Raises

Performing lateral raises behind your head can cause shoulder impingement and potential injuries. Stick to front or side lateral raises to effectively target your shoulder muscles without risking harm.

12. Leg Presses with Feet High on the Platform

Positioning your feet high on the leg press platform can place excessive stress on your knees and potentially lead to injury. Place your feet shoulder-width apart and lower on the platform to maintain proper alignment and reduce the risk of knee strain.

13. Crunches with Feet Anchored

Performing crunches with your feet anchored can strain your hip flexors and lead to imbalanced muscle development. Try performing crunches with your feet elevated or using an exercise ball to engage your core effectively.

14. Seated Russian Twists with Weight Plate

Seated Russian twists with a weight plate can strain your lower back and potentially cause injury. Instead, perform Russian twists without weights or use a medicine ball to reduce the stress on your spine.

15. Behind-the-Head Tricep Extensions

Performing tricep extensions behind your head can strain your shoulders and potentially lead to injury. Opt for tricep exercises like overhead tricep extensions or close-grip bench presses to target your tricep muscles more safely.

16. Leg Presses with Feet Close Together

Positioning your feet close together on the leg press can put excessive strain on your knees and increase the risk of injury. Keep your feet shoulder-width apart to maintain proper alignment and reduce stress on your joints.

17. Neck Bridges

Neck bridges can place significant stress on your neck and potentially lead to injury. Avoid this exercise and focus on neck stretches or isometric exercises to strengthen your neck muscles safely.

18. Seated Behind-the-Neck Military Presses

Seated military presses performed behind your neck can strain your shoulders and neck, increasing the risk of injury. Choose seated military presses in front of your head to target your shoulder muscles effectively and safely.

19. Leg Presses with Feet Pointed Outward

Positioning your feet with toes pointed outward during leg presses can strain your knees and potentially lead to injury. Keep your feet parallel to reduce stress on your joints and maintain proper alignment.

20. Ballistic Stretches

Ballistic stretches involve bouncing movements and can cause muscle tears and strains. Instead, opt for static stretches to improve flexibility and reduce the risk of injury.

21. Seated Twists with Resistance

Seated twists with resistance, such as using a resistance band, can strain your lower back and potentially cause injury. Focus on exercises like standing twists or cable woodchops to target your oblique muscles safely.

22. Leg Presses with Feet Pointed Inward

Positioning your feet with toes pointed inward during leg presses can strain your knees and increase the risk of injury. Keep your feet parallel to maintain proper alignment and reduce stress on your joints.

23. Behind-the-Head Bicep Curls

Performing bicep curls behind your head can strain your shoulders and potentially lead to injury. Opt for regular bicep curls or hammer curls to target your bicep muscles without compromising your joint health.

24. Leg Extensions with Heavy Weights

Performing leg extensions with heavy weights can place excessive strain on your knee joint and potentially lead to injury. Stick to lighter weights and focus on proper form to protect your knees.

25. Behind-the-Head Pull-Ups

Performing pull-ups behind your head can strain your shoulders, neck, and rotator cuff muscles. Instead, opt for regular pull-ups or assisted pull-ups to target your back muscles effectively and safely.

Conclusion

While it’s important to stay active and engage in regular exercise, it’s equally important to prioritize safety and avoid exercises that can lead to injury or lack effectiveness.

By understanding which exercises to avoid and seeking alternatives, you can minimize the risk of harm and maximize your results.

Always consult with a qualified fitness professional before starting any new exercise program.

This article was updated 1 month ago

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