Avoid these common mistakes when exercising at home
With the ongoing pandemic many have chosen to skip the gym and workout at home or outdoors to keep up with their health and fitness goals.
Check out five of the most common mistakes when training at home and how to make your workouts safer and more effective.
1, Skipping the warm-up
When you are at home and not a gym class it’s tempting to save a few minutes and completely skip your warm-up.
Doing a couple jumping jacks and shaking your arms and legs around a little is not an effective way to warm up your body in preparation for intense exercise and will massively increase your risk of injury during your workout.
A good warm-up should raise your heart rate, loosen and stretch all the major joints and muscles and, ideally, mimic the type of exercises you will do in your workout.
If you’re unsure what to do as a warm-up, perform one to two rounds of what you’ll be doing as the actual workout, but at a slower speed and lower intensity. If your workout involves weighted squats and full push-ups, perform one to two rounds of slow body weight squats without the weight and some kneeling push-ups to prepare yourself.
2, Picking Instagram workouts that aren’t designed for you
The workouts you do should be tailored to your goals and current fitness level. If you’re overweight or have knee injuries or are completely new to exercise, trying to complete an advanced workout plan is probably not the greatest idea.
Not only will it increase your risk of injury, you will also end up having to modify most of the exercises and won’t get the true benefit of the exercise programme. Try to look for, or design a home workout that caters to your fitness needs and limitations.
3, Skipping variety in your workouts
One of the most challenging issues with home workouts is the lack of equipment available. You might be lucky enough to have home gym or you might not have anything at all other than your own body weight.
Lack of equipment to workout can lead to very poorly designed workouts that are based on just a few primary movements like squats, push-ups and sit-ups.
Short-term, this is not an issue. But after a while, repeatedly doing the same things can lead to strength and muscular imbalances, repetitive strain injuries and emphasise poor posture. Make sure that you are doing balanced workouts that work all of the major muscles groups.
4, Skipping strength-based workouts
Our muscles are the key to reducing frailty as we age, weight management and reducing the risk of injuries from day to day. Unfortunately with muscles, if you don’t use them, you will lose them.
If your home workout plan only includes cardio-style workouts, you risk neglecting your muscular strength.
Try to make sure you’re including some good quality strength-based exercises at least twice a week to help stimulate muscle growth, increase cardiovascular strength and improve endurance.
5, Skipping your stretch
It is very tempting to skip stretching in any workout. However, skipping your stretch regularly puts you at a higher risk for developing tight muscles which in turn could lead to many injuries or postural issues.
The more flexible you are, the more exercises you will be able to do properly and it will also improve the quality of your workouts.
Remember that stretching will not only help you recover from your last workout but will also improve the quality of your next one.
I hope you have a few more things to consider when approaching your workout plans. I wish you the very best of luck with your home training over the coming weeks. If you need any help putting together an awesome home workout routine then reach out to me. Stay safe and B-Active For Life.
• Betty Doyling is a certified fitness trainer and figure competitor with more than a decade of experience. Look for B. ActiveForLife on Facebook