There are many exercises you can do at the gym that are rumored to be effective, but actually are quite damaging. Read on to figure out which exercises you could be doing that aren’t helping your health and fitness!

Many people have been doing lateral pull downs on the pull-down machine lately.  They do this by taking the bar from above their head and pulling it down behind their neck.

The problem is that there is never a time when you would have to pull the back of your neck up to a bar.  That just isn’t something you are going to have to do.

It is supposed to build the triceps and deltoids, but the problem is a lot of people lack the range of motion necessary for the exercise to be effective, so they end up just putting a lot of strain on the joints.  Similar to the pull down the behind-the-back military press is a good way to get some bad elbows.

It is done in the opposite motion of the pull down.  The bar is rested on the shoulders, presumably of a military man, and then pushed up ward.

This exercise is much more effective if the bar is lowered over the chest rather than the back, and it is a lot less damaging that way too.  Both these exercises are kind of silly anyways because they do not even serve any functional movement. Here’s a video to help explain:

The upright row is also a big no-no.  People do this exercise because it is a great way to build the triceps in the arms, but it is also going to compress the nerves in the shoulders.

So instead of compressing the nerves in your shoulders and losing the ability to throw a football, you could try a lateral raise instead of an upright row. Using dumbbells for a lateral raise is going to work the triceps just as well as an upright row would, but you will not get any of the nerve compression.

Now, let’s discuss those of you who are training on a treadmill.

Another really big no-no is acting lazy on a treadmill.  Bad posture or a tight grip on the hand rails is going to cheat your body.

It could throw off your alignment creating a jarring pressure on your spine.  So when you are running on the treadmill keep your arms moving and not resting lackadaisically on the hand rails.

Also try to keep a front foot jog rather than a heel foot jog.  Landing on the heels when jogging can cause jarring impact on the knees, so try to land on the middle ball of your foot when jogging.

Whenever you are exercising, you should be keeping in mind the proper techniques and form to keep your body safe, and this will promote physical development better too.

About the author: Jessica Staheli is a health and fitness nut. She loves to write about being healthy and getting in shape because she believes that taking care of your body is important. Having fitness equipment in your home is a great way to remind yourself to exercise, and she recommends treadmillreviews.com for help with choosing a treadmill. You can follow her at Google+.