An ever-growing number of Americans are taking part in physical activities these days. People work out to lose weight, tone their muscles, improve their heart health, and take advantage of numerous other benefits. While many people prefer to carry out their exercise sessions in a gym or fitness center, working out at home is becoming increasingly popular. Doing so allows people to work physical activity into their schedules rather than having to plan their days around trips to the gym. It also encourages more people to participate in exercise routines.
Working Out at Home the Right Way
Numerous exercises can safely and effectively be done at home. Whether you’re using high-end fitness equipment or homemade weights and other tools, those activities can go a long way toward improving your health. Having said that, certain exercises shouldn’t be done on your own without the guidance of a personal trainer. While planning your at-home workout routine, consider avoiding the following exercises.
1) Barbell Jump Squats
Jump squats are perfect for toning the back, legs, and glutes and strengthening your core among other benefits. Adding weights to the mix only enhances the effects of this exercise. Still, experts recommend avoiding jump squats with barbells at home. They can lead to back, neck, and leg injuries as well as other problems. Include jump squats in your routine and use dumbbells for extra weight, but leave out the overloaded barbells.
Sit-ups are among the most common exercises among fitness-minded individuals. They’re incredibly popular and highly recommended in many circles. At this point, though, many experts are advising people to veer away from them, especially during unsupervised routines. If not done correctly, they can do more harm than good and are largely ineffective for toning abdominal muscles.
3) Machine-Aided Bicep Curls
Bicep curls have long been used to give strength and definition to the upper arms and surrounding muscles. Many people might argue that it’s nearly impossible to get this exercise wrong. That’s not necessarily true when you use a bicep curl machine, though, because it hampers motion and range. Keep the curls in your routine, but stick to the freestyle version as opposed to using the machine.
4) Improper Pull-Ups
Pull-ups are also common exercises. Unfortunately, most people don’t do them correctly according to fitness experts. When they’re not done right, they don’t increase your strength, muscle definition, or any other positive attribute. Unless you’ve had proper training, don’t do pull-ups at home.
5) Upright Rows
Authorities also advise against doing upright rows at home. When not done correctly, they can cause extensive injuries, such as rotator cuff tears. They can also lead to nerve compression and, by extension, random tingling sensations in the arms and hands along with other problems.
6) Chair Dips
Yet another potentially harmful at-home exercise is the chair dip. For a time, this exercise was recommended as an alternative for people who don’t have official exercise equipment at home. At this point, though, it has largely fallen out of favor. Many people don’t use proper form when doing chair dips. Additionally, chairs and benches often dump their users into the floor rather than aiding in their exercise routines.
7) Lat Pull-Downs
Experts say at-home fitness buffs shouldn’t do lat pull-downs behind the neck, either. Though this exercise can strengthen upper back muscles, most people don’t do it correctly without the benefit of an instructor. As such, it’s responsible for numerous back and neck injuries and spinal alignment issues.
Keeping Your Workout Safe and Effective
Exercising at home is a great way to improve your strength and stamina while warding off unwanted pounds and numerous health issues. Still, it’s important to work out safely and effectively. Many exercise machines can cause problems, and people often use the improper form when carrying out certain types of exercises. In those cases, working out can ultimately be dangerous as opposed to helpful.