The 3 Basic Exercises You’re Doing Wrong

3ExercisesYoureDoingWrong
You know how to do a push-up, right? What’s to know? Lower down, push up, rinse, repeat. Not so fast. When it comes to exercise moves, one thing is more important than number of reps, number of pounds, and everything else. FORM. If you don’t have the form right, you’re pretty much wasting your time and sweat. So we asked three of Barry’s Bootcamp’s trainers to pick the move they think is done incorrectly more than any other, and give us the 4-1-1 on the correct form.

PUSHUPS – Martin George

THE WRONG WAY:
Hands placed out in front of the shoulders and ass way up in the air like a plumber working under a sink.

THE RIGHT WAY:
Hands placed in line with the chest (or nipple line, if you will). Butt in line with the rest of the body. Set it up by lying on the ground and placing the hands on the outside of your chest, below the level of your shoulders. Do that and keep in mind that you are not in a “Bubble Butt” video and you’ll be good to go.

TIP:
Do your pushups on your knees if you can’t get at least 3/4 of the way to the floor. You want a full range of motion to really affect the muscles. Work up to the pushups on your toes. Or better yet, try the first few on your toes. Every time you do them, add one more to the amount you do on your toes, before switching to your knees.

CRUNCHES – Rhonda Hunt

THE WRONG WAY:
What’s up with the death-grip on the head? Pulling your head to your knees is not going to give you the six-pack you’ve been yearning for. Leading with your chin will only leave you with a frustrating strained neck.

THE RIGHT WAY:
Release the interlaced fingers, rest the fingertips behind your ears, center your head between the shoulders and contract your abs. Power up by sinking your navel down and lift your torso as one strong unit — the head just comes along for the ride! Our goal is to get the chest higher, not the chin. If you can’t resist the temptation to pull the head, try opening the elbows wide and look at the ceiling and aim HIGH!

SQUATS – Erik Steffens

THE WRONG WAY:
The primary move to work the butt, the way to saving a life time of back pain and a great way to burn calories. But a very challenging move to pull off efficiently. A squat is a multi-joint exercise – meaning that multiple muscle groups are activated at once, making the form incredibly challenging to do. Most clients I’ve worked with think that a squat is about lowering the body to the ground. Technically this is true, but most people bend their knees past their toes, abusing the tendons and knee joints.

THE RIGHT WAY:
The point of a squat is to work the legs, and in doing so, the body just happens to compress towards the ground. Think about pushing your butt as far behind you as possible, while keeping a large portion of weight in your heels. As you continue to push the butt back, it will consequently lower your body as a matter of balance.

TIP:
Face a wall. Make a fist with your hands and extend your arms straight out until they are touching the wall. Start to push your butt back and allow some knee bend, but not without losing sight of your toes. Use the hands for steadying as you lower. The focus should be to only feel strain in your butt and not in your knees. Continue to repeat this until you feel confident you don’t need the wall.

 

MARTIN GEORGE is the LA General Manager for Barry’s Bootcamp as well as a Master Trainer. He teaches classes six mornings a week at the Sherman Oaks location in Los Angeles.
Contact info:
Facebook.com/martin.george.549
Twitter.com/4_marting

RHONDA HUNT trains at Barry’s Bootcamp in TriBeCa in New York City, and along with traditional Barry’s Bootcamp classes, Rhonda trains in the TRX method on Thursdays.
Contact info:
Facebook.com/Rhonda.Hunt.14
Rhonda@barrysbootcamp.com

ERIK STEFFENS is a professional actor and runner who trains at the Sherman Oaks location of Barry’s Bootcamp in Los Angeles both mornings and evenings on weekdays, and teaches his famous “Psycho Sunday” class every Sunday (naturally) at 7:30 AM and 8:45 AM.
Contact info:
Facebook.com/erik.steffens1