Stop working out wrong. Quality fitness equipment is an investment and Gym Source wants to ensure you get the most from it AND your workouts. To help, we enlisted one of Gym Source’s VIP personal trainers, Petros Arzoumanidis owner of Workout Anywhere, INC, to demonstrate how to avoid some of the most common workout mistakes.
We feel passionately that in addition to choosing the right home gym equipment, personal trainers are an excellent tool to add to your workout routine. Especially because they can teach you the proper techniques and forms to get the most from your workouts.
“I love using a variety of equipment, and it is important to keep the body guessing with different exercises; however my experience is that there are a few common mistakes that a lot of my clients make when performing certain exercises.”
“If you’re already going through the motions, you might as well get the reward (and avoid joint pain by following proper body alignment),” shares Petros.
To start, Petros’ shares his top tips to achieve the results you want
– Know your limits and learn how to progressively (and safely) push them.
– Always be sure to warm up for about 10-15 minutes (more as we age above 40-50+).
– Consider your goals when starting a program. He recommends, completing 6-8 exercises of 8-15 reps of about 3-4 sets each.
“Lighter weights with faster reps are good for cardio, and slimming down while building thinner lean mass which good for endurance. While heavier weights with lower reps, more rest between sets, and lower rep counts (usually past) failure build fast-twitch fiber muscles which are physically bulkier.”
– Exercise with equipment appropriate for you and your goals.
– Consider training zones. He suggests working towards a Target Heart Rate between 45/55%-65/75% of your Max Heart Rate.
“Targeting your training zone between 55-75% of your max heart rate (or 45-65% for older/special populations), burns calories most effectively.”
– Not all reps are considered equal.
“I like to remind my clients, and anyone working towards living a healthier, stronger way of life, that not all reps are created equal. It’s important to consider Time Under Tension: (ie. 15 reps in 25 seconds is generally easier than 15 reps in 45 seconds), because you held the weight for a longer period of time.”
– Remember to cool down & stretch at the end of every session to lengthen your muscles.
You are working out wrong
“I’ve never liked the phrase pain is weakness leaving your body, it’s important to train for health, and when you don’t complete exercises properly you are putting yourself at risk for injury.”
To help fellow fitness fans avoid the most common workout mistakes, we invited Petros to visit his local Woodbury Gym Source fitness equipment showroom to demonstrate the proper way to perform some of his favorite exercises at home (or anywhere!).
How to properly perform a deadlift
TRAINER TIPS: “Keep the barbell close to the body. Drive the heels into the ground as if you’re pushing the ground away. Stand tall, look straight, and own the movement. Do not let your knees cave in or push out. Do not round your back. Have your back straight and your neck slightly extended to look up. Your feet should be hip or shoulder width apart. The barbell should be over the toes, with your heels heavy, and your feet parallel.”
How to properly use a leg press
TRAINER TIPS: “Place your feet high enough on the platform that your knees do not extend past your toes. Keep your feet parallel and hip width apart. Exhale and drive the platform forward with your heels. Knees should not extend past your toes because this places most of the weight’s stress on just the knees, rather than distributing the weight equally through your hips, knees, and ankles.”
How to properly use the Max Trainer
TRAINER TIPS: “Drive your heel into the pedal for optimal performance and less pressure on the ankles, knees, and hips. Do not let your heels rise off the pedal, or ride too far back on the pedal. Additionally, avoid leaning too far forward.”
Learn more about the benefits of the Max Trainer and how to get max results in just 14 minutes.
Common Treadmill Mistakes
TRAINER TIPS: “One of the most common mistakes I see with people working out on a treadmill is walking too far forward or too far towards the back. Begin safely by starting centered on the treadmill, then choosing your speed. It’s important to remain centered and even on the treadmill throughout your workout.”
How to properly use TRX Suspension Training
TRAINER TIPS: “It is important you keep your body aligned properly and your core strong. Remember to pinch your shoulder blades, keep your arms inline with your shoulders, elbows bent at 90 degrees, and keep your neck neutral with your spine. Do not slump or sag your hips. Have a tight grip, and make sure your feet have traction. Consider starting out with one or both knees bent slightly to ensure traction, safety, and your own comfort”
TRAINER TALK – HOW TO MODIFY TRX MOVEMENTS: “I like to point out that the further forward you walk towards your anchor point, the harder the exercises become. Likewise, when you walk further back, your body has less range of motion (and you are more vertical) – eliminating a mechanical advantage.”
Petros is not the only VIP trainer who loves the TRX System. Esther Choi Williams with Fitblvd is also a big fan of the TRX.
How to properly perform a bent row
TRAINER TIPS: “Do not slouch. Place feet parallel hip width apart, heel heavy, slight bend in the knees, hinge at the hips with a neutral flat back life the barbell of the rack, adjust your footing, further hinge at the hips so your back is almost parallel with the ground, then contract your shoulder blades, (really squeeze them), as you drive your elbows towards the ceiling, control and clench at the end range, then slowly lower the barbell while maintaining the stance, that’s one rep.
Don’t ‘see-saw’ the weight, it should ideally move in a perfectly vertical plane of motion up and down. At the end range of motion your arms should be bent at the elbow at a 90-degree angle, wrists firm in line with forearms, shoulder blades squeezed together, spine neutral, core braced having just exhaled.
Common error: Not being more horizontal, (remember, you’re not doing an upright row). If you’re feeling it more in your arms rather than your back muscles, you’re not doing it properly and putting yourself at risk for injury (also losing gains by not using those larger back muscles that can also lift heavier).”
“Fitness is my passion. It is important to me that I share the correct way to perform exercises and movements, and that my clients understand how to correctly adapt movements to accommodate any discomforts or ailments. When you push yourself in the gym, regular tasks just begin to feel easier, you can sleep better, and most people tend to even eat healthier. Exercising with equipment appropriate for you and your goals will help you enjoy a stronger more beautiful way of living!”
Ready to get started?
Want more help to determine the best home fitness equipment or to get the best results from your workouts, check out:
Please note: workouts suggested are not to be interpreted as treatment plans or substitutes for medical consultation. Before undertaking any exercise program, please consult a physician or healthcare provider for appropriate safety precautions. If at any point during a workout you start to feel dizzy, faint, short of breath, or experience physical discomfort, discontinue your exercise immediately and consult a physician.