Build a Strong Foundation
One of the most crucial elements in building a strong foundation in your personal fitness routine is to understand the importance of good form while exercising and training. Through proper guidance and practice the benefits of good form will yield notable results in developing a long-term fitness plan and they will be a key factor in living a longer, more fulfilling life. Additionally, poor form increases your susceptibility to injuries, which can lead to a multitude of complications down the road. Remember, a house is only as strong as the foundation it is built on.
Form Is Number One
Proper form far supersedes intensity or exercise routines. Think about it like this; you can have a world-class exercise routine written by the best fitness specialist on the planet; however if it’s not implemented properly you’re not going to reap the rewards of the intended outcome. You may end up doing yourself more harm than good.
We live in a world where efficiency is everything, no one wants to waste valuable time and energy on something while not getting all they can out of it especially when it comes to your body.
Understanding the goals and why you’re doing a particular exercise also helps, for example learning proper dead-lift form will translate over into real life when you’re going to pick up that heavy box of files that’s been sitting on the floor of your office.
The following are some ideas to think about:
Get an outside opinion: Have an experienced professional watch your form and critique you. Sometimes we may have a skewed perception of how we’re performing an exercise; even if we think it looks right it may not be.
Tip: If you don’t have a professional to work with you at the moment do some research and find some pictures or videos from a credible source of the exercise being performed, have a friend watch you and compare your movement to the picture.
Make the last one as good as the first one: As muscle fatigue sets in we tend to start losing focus on form because your body is trying to compensate to make the movement easier.
Tip: When you get to a point where you feel as though you are losing the form pay extra close attention to what you’re doing, if you can’t move the weight the same way you moved it on the first rep, it time to put the weight down.
Think about why you’re doing an exercise: Having an understanding of why you’re doing a particular exercise will make you more inclined to want to perform it correctly so that you’re getting the benefits of all your hard work.
-Stephen Stahl, CPT, PRCS