Go into any gym and you will see someone trying to lift a weight that’s clearly too heavy for them. Their technique is terrible, and not only is it ineffective in working the desired muscles, you’ll be due an injury in the very near future.

Why does this happen? Your typical alpha male is a prime example. Often, he’s only interested in how heavy he can lift and doesn’t particularly care how he does it.

Take Squats for example. Rather than work on the flexibility required to perform a full depth squat, or even getting to parallel for starters, many will work on increasing the weight before improving the movement.

Your 100kg Back Squat might only take you some of the way down and leaning forward due to a weak core, while someone else’s 100kg might be full range with excellent posture.

It can also be down to lack of knowledge. No one ever walked into a gym first time around and knew what they were doing. Someone either showed you or you learned through a book or Youtube.

On the face of it, most exercises are easy. However once you start looking into them further, they can all be broken down into individual steps that piece together like a jigsaw to make the complete movement.

If you can see past the weight that you’re lifting and ask yourself honestly “Am I doing this correctly?” then you’ll progress to a much higher level than if you focus solely on the numbers.

As an example, if you haven’t already, try an Overhead Squat. It’s a great exercise for mobility and strength and requires very little weight for a serious workout (Barbell only for starters). The list is endless.

The same principles apply to running. Terrible running style? I know, I’ll buy more supportive shoes to alleviate the symptoms rather than work on the underlying issue through drills to improve form! Yet again, we’d rather do the miles and work on speed rather than learn HOW to run (And be strong enough, but that’s on another blog)

So the next time you’re working out have a look at your technique. Start off with one or two exercises – any more and it can get a bit overwhelming – and ask yourself if you can improve how you’re doing it, even if that means taking a step back in terms of weight or intensity.