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Why form is important

I feel like I touch on this every single week on the podcast or on the blog but I will continue to say it: there is so much misinformation out there on social media regarding every single topic ever but today I'm touching on misinformation in regards to exercise form. I've seen some videos where the creator claims form isn't important at all, some that claim a revolutionary form tip/trick, some that are preaching dangerous and injury inducing form guidance, and much more. Not all exercise and form content is wrong-social media is an amazing tool that helps small businesses like ourselves. BUT, the fitness accounts are not regulated by exercise and health professionals so anyone can say literally anything they wanted too-even if its totally false and potentially dangerous.

Form during exercise is crucial for multiple different reasons. Number 1 being your safety. According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission ~526,000 people living in America are injured yearly using gym equipment at home and/or in the gym. And out of the 526,000, 43,000 of those incidents were severe or fatal. It's so important to question who you're learning from and ask for evidence behind their recommendations.

Form is also crucial to the results you see/feel. When I was in PT school learning how to assess people's strength through manual muscle testing-we were taught to watch for common compensations the body will use to accomplish it's task (rather than isolating the muscle being tested). It's the same with exercise-compensations will absolutely affect your results. Rather than isolating a particular muscle group, the body will often recruit surrounding muscles to help therefore reducing the load and force to the muscle group you're trying to strengthen. This could slow your results and overall make your workouts less effective.

I don't want this blog and podcast episode to create fear that keeps you from exercising. You can self assess if your form is productive for you by asking the question: "am I hurting after this particular workout/exercise?" if the answer is yes, you could have some form compensations that are affecting your body negatively. I would seek out the instructor of your class or even better a physical therapist (me :)) for guidance if that's the case.

You can also ask yourself the question: "am I seeing the results I want?" If the answer is no and it's been 6 months or more of a regular exercise routine- I would seek out the instructor of your class or even better a physical therapist (me :)) for guidance if your current exercise program isn't feeling productive and reaching the results you would like.

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