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One of my biggest mistakes

I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my training programs.

I have to laugh at myself often…otherwise I want to curl up in a corner and cry at some of the silly things I’ve taught or said.

Hopefully, in sharing my failures, this can help you avoid some of the same mistakes and tweak your program.

The one mistake that sticks out more prominently than anything else is the idea of good and bad exercises.

Still today I have people say things to me like “free weights are better than machine exercises…”

Um…

Maybe.

The truth is, it depends. What if you’re rehabbing an ACL injury and you need the stability a machine provides? What if you’re 72 years old and you have arthritis in your knee and you need to reduce the amount of sheer force?

Perhaps you’ve heard someone say “Don’t squat below 90 degrees, it’s bad for your knees…”

Again, it depends…Are you injured? Inflexible? I’ve never seen a young kid have a problem sitting in a deep squat while they play.

How about this one…

“Deadlifting is bad for your back.”

Not so fast…

It CAN be bad…it depends on a bunch of different factors.

There are no good or bad exercises. Movements should not have some arbitrary morality assigned to indicate whether they are “good”.

In my opinion, a better way to think about exercise selection is this…

Is this exercise appropriate for my body, safe, and will it help push me towards my goal?

If the answer is yes, go for it. If the answer is no, but you still want to do it, ask yourself what prerequisites you need to accomplish in order to engage in the said exercise.

Exercise becomes a lot more fun when you open up endless possibilities and eliminate the concept of “bad” exercises from your mind.