IT PROBABLY ISN’T THE EXERCISE THAT’S WRONG, IT’S HOW YOU’RE DOING IT! by Ed Winfield
As Trainers it is our job to design a program that best suits the individual clients needs. Also, to ensure that proper technique, weight, sets, and reps are being used.
A good Trainer will understand their client’s individual requirements that will help achieve their goals. The Trainer should put a program together that will help their client progress through a cycle of weeks or months, to see maximum results. What I often see is a circus of various over-complicated, unnecessary exercises that amount to nothing except getting prepared for an injury. Sometimes those clients can’t even do a basic exercise like a squat or pushup properly, yet I see them standing on one leg with a 25 lb dumbbell in one hand over their head, on top of a bosu ball, eyes closed, snapping their fingers and talking about feeling the burn.
A simple and yet difficult exercise, when done properly, is the squat. Form, mechanics, understanding muscle engagement, and weight distribution, are just some basic elements that need to be taught and performed correctly in order to not get hurt, and see results.
Therein lies the problem, performing the exercise correctly.
A body weight squat is a starting point. Adding a load, whether it be a barbell on your back, holding a dumbbell or kettlebell in front of you or weight in each hand, changes the exercise completely. If you don’t think so, then go back to the circus.
A Trainer needs to know how to perform the exercise correctly, themselves, before trying to teach it to someone else. What the client is counting on after paying for a program, is that their trainer knows what he or she is doing. Unfortunately, a lot of times they don’t. Which leads to the title of this article, is it the exercise that’s wrong or how you are doing it.
For instance, the squat is a meat and potatoes exercise. When done correctly, it will strengthen your glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps, core and other stability muscles. It is a full body, functional movement. Barring a mechanical problem or injury, everyone can be taught the correct way to perform this movement.
Depending who you are, it might take awhile to perfect the movement, this is where knowledge and patience come in. A trainer shouldn’t give up, because they are frustrated or do not know how to correct the problem. And they certainly shouldn’t make the exercise more intense until the form is correct. Research, ask questions, figure out how to fix the issue. The client will get so much more out of the session and so will the trainer.
It comes down to one thing, how coachable is the trainer and or client. The trainer is the professional and should be in control of what is going on with the program.
Results will speak for themselves.
But if you don’t like it, don’t wanna do it, go join the circus.