5 Workout Mistakes You’re Probably Making.

_DTM3426There’s room for improvement in every routine - and these five workout mistakes are extremely common. Are you making any of them?

  1. Warming up with static stretching. As I wrote earlier, static exercises - like touching your toes and holding it - decrease speed, reduce strength and increase injury risk. Dynamic stretching - like jumping jacks or arm circles - are a much smarter choice.
  2. Holding onto the treadmill. Or the stairmaster. Holding onto the sides of a treadmill makes the exercise easier - which translates to fewer calories burned. It worsens balance, increases injury risk and doesn’t translate to real world running. Moreover, holding onto the treadmill negates the incline. You’re better off decreasing the speed and letting go.
  3. Bench pressing with your legs up. Watching people bench press while keeping their legs lifted, elevated or resting on the bench is one of my biggest gym pet peeves. While exercisers may believe this makes the bench press more challenging, it’s actually incredibly unsafe - and it cuts your results short. Much of the lift in bench pressing is created by pressing into the floor through your feet. By keeping your feet flat on the ground, you’ll actually be able to press higher levels of resistance and obtain better results.
  4. Not resisting the pull on cable exercises. Cable exercises are a popular choices because - unlike traditional free weights - they provide constant resistance. Free weights, on the other hand, only provide resistance when you’re lifting them against gravity. However, many exercisers forget to resist the pull when returning the cable exercise to the starting position. Instead, they just let the weight drop back down without control. In the process, they lose half the exercise and half the benefits.
  5. Resting too long. Resting between sets is important - but seconds can quickly turn into minutes. If you’re a bodybuilder looking to make serious gains, resting for a few minutes makes sense. But for the rest of us, keep an eye to the clock and limit your rests to no more than 45 - 60 seconds. In fact, decreasing rest time is a great way to intensify your workout. Or, you can introduce supersets to make your workout more efficient.

If you’re guilty of these mistakes, there’s no shame. They’re all extremely common and certainly easy to overcome.

In the comments below, please share some other common workout mistakes that you see at the gym.

About Davey Wavey

Davey Wavey is a certified personal trainer and YouTube sensation with more than 250 million video views. For Davey's fitness tips and secrets, sign up for his free monthly newsletter - or download any of his affordable and effective workout programs.


  1. Dear Davey, It is so encouraging to me that you are an actual guy with real world tips on how to be happier with your body as well as frankness and honesty with the issues of being gay. Your youtube videos, especially the practical ones, helped me survive a much deeper coming out last year, a kind of “coming in” that I haven’t heard anyone talk of before, and as I began wrestling with issues of gender and sexual identity and expression in my own soul, your brave and often funny treatment of being a gay man helped me get through. Thank you for your work. It’s nice that you’re pretty, but it’s better that you are such a real and courageous man who is committed to his work.

  2. I agree with everything except for #3. As a CPT, I train all my clients to bench with their legs in the air. It isolates the chest and actually allows you to rest your back focusing on just the chest and tricep. I do not see how it would appear unsafe to you, Davey?

  3. Placing my feet on the bench during bench press protects the lower back.

  4. It toally depends on your client base though. Most Americans completely ignore their form and how it impacts the development of their body. Adding in a complication for your average American will certainly increase their risk of injury due to the fact they will probably forget to continue to maintain proper form (or inspect exactly how the complication impacts proper form). While what you say may be true, it depends on a specific set of circumstances. Davey Wavey’s tips I believe are generally targeted at the general public, so I think he took the correct angle on this one.

    Also, static stretching isn’t necessarily BAD for you according to what I’ve learned myself. I think they are well suited for the END of a work out, when you are trying to cool your body down. Tell me what you think about this.

  5. Nope, I’m in the clear so far 😉

  6. I didn’t realize i spend so much time watching others 🙂

  7. I disagree with number 3, I have to keep my legs on the bench to protect my lower back, can’t put my feet on the floor, if you had a back problem you would understand this. My P.T. always told me to bench press this way.