3 Exercises That Do More Harm Than Good

Posted on August 18th, 2015 by Orthopaedic Specialty Group

The gym can be a dangerous place, especially for inexperienced lifters. All it takes is just one rep with too much weight or poor form, and you will find yourself out of commission for weeks. Any exercise can become dangerous if done incorrectly, but certain movements are destined for disaster. We aren’t talking about crazy olympic lifts or CrossFit routines, either; some very simple, very common exercises actually do more harm than good.

If you are looking to stay healthy and prevent injury, avoid these three exercises at the gym:

Behind the Head Shoulder Press or Lat Pulldowns

Whether you are pressing the weight up or pulling it down, avoid doing so behind your head. Shoulder injuries are already a common occurrence during upper-body workouts, but putting your hands behind your head greatly increases your chances of getting hurt. This simple alteration causes excessive rotation of your shoulders, and puts your anterior deltoids in a compromised position where you are susceptible to an impingement.

Leg Press

Although the leg press is a common lower body workout, it is as unsafe as they come, especially for those who load up the machine with several plates on each side. According to Men’s Fitness, the leg press machine does not allow your muscles to perform in a functional manner, and it places a ton of stress on your knees and lower back. If you are looking to build bigger legs, try squats, leg extensions, and hamstring curls.

Bench Dips

After the bench press, the dip is probably the most popular movement for those looking to beef up their chest. While performing this movement on parallel bars can lead to injury if done wrong, proper form is safe for your muscles and joints. On the other hand, bench dips are never safe – no matter how you do them. When your shoulders are internally rotated to that level, you are asking for a shoulder injury. Not to mention that having your palms in a fixed position behind the body also puts unnecessary strain on the elbows. Stick to the parallel bars, or try the close-grip bench press to add mass to your triceps.

Did you do one of these exercises, or maybe something else, that has lead to pain in your muscles or joints? Whether it’s a tear, sprain, strain, impingement, or something else, the orthopedic experts at OSG can get you on the road to recovery. With three locations in Fairfield County and a team of Connecticut’s leading specialists, we have what it takes to get you healthy again. Visit our website for more information or call us at (203) 337-2600 to schedule an appointment.