5 Exercises You DO NOT Need To Be Doing….

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I’ll put it simply, the following exercises are about as useful as a poo flavored lolly pop. In short: don’t do them.

1. Anything on a BOSU ball, Airex pad, Dyna-disc, etc: I already blogged about this before (scroll down to “Training for the Circus). I really feel that such exercises have NO place in an individual’s training program. All they do is teach horrible motor patterns (knocked knees, rounded back, etc), and make people weaker. And no, they don’t work your “core” any more effectively than the same movements done on a stable surface. You want an exercise that works your core? Front squats or lunge holding a dumbbell on one side of your body.

BOSU Ball Squat

2. Leg Press: Unless you’re training to be the world’s best incline weight pusher, I really see no need to implement leg presses into anyone’s weight training program. Not only do they have ZERO carry over to REAL LIFE events (sorry fellas but just because you can leg press 600 lbs, doesn’t mean you can squat 600 lbs. I can guarantee you won’t be able to squat 225), but they also produce a TON (literally) more compressive and shear force on the spine. While most people think that leg presses are “safer” than squats….that is FAR from the truth.

Leg Press

3. Arm Curls: Fellas, here’s a little word of advice. If you can’t perform at least five pull-ups with your own body weight, you DO NOT need to be doing an entire training session of bicep curls. The reason you don’t have big arms is because you’re weaker than a baby’s fart, not because you’re not doing enough arm curls. And ladies, please put down the pink dumbbells and grab some heavier weights. Trust me, you won’t get big and bulky.

Arm Curl

4. Add-ductor/AB-ductor Machines: Ladies, here’s a little word of advice. If you want a nice butt and thighs (show me one woman who doesn’t), learn to squat and deadlift and lunge properly. The abductor muscles (glute medius, glute minimus) and adductor muscles (adductor magnus, adductor brevis, adductor longus) are meant to work as STABILIZERS, not PRIME MOVERS in a fixed plane of motion. Training them as prime movers (as you do with those silly machines) does little to tighten up those thighs (not to mention they totally neglect the butt) because you’re not able to use that much weight in the first place. Additionally, you’re really setting yourself up for a plethora of postural imbalances by relying on these machines.

Adductor Machine

5. Bench Dips: This movement targets the triceps and is often recommended to take the place of regular dips. I see this exercise being done almost on a daily basis. Unfortunately, performing this movement maximally internally rotates the humerus (arm bone), which drastically decreases the subacromial space which can lead to impingement syndrome. (Translation: You’ll get an ouchie.) Not a good scenario, especially for those prone to shoulder injuries.

I don’t necessarily like to make blanket statements such as “x” movement is pointless, but in the case of the exercises listed above, it’s true.

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