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10 Workout Mistakes People ALWAYS Make (& How To Fix!)

Written by Liz Brown

You’d be surprised just how many people perform these 10 exercises WRONG! A Certified Personal Trainer reveals the top 10 most common workout mistakes you’re most likely making and how to fix them!

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If you’ve ever done an exercise and wondered if you were doing it correctly, or maybe you felt “the burn” somewhere you probably shouldn’t have, you’re not alone! In fact, you’d be surprised at how many workout mistakes people make when they exercise. 

I’ve been a Certified Personal Trainer (CPT) with the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) since 2012, and trust me when I say that I’ve seen my fair share of exercise mistakes over the years. I’ve even seen some of the most experienced gym-goers using improper form or poor technique during an exercise. It’s nothing to be ashamed of, we’re all guilty of it from time to time, but I won’t lie to you—if certain workout mistakes continue to go unaddressed or uncorrected, they could potentially lead to muscular imbalances that contribute to postural issues, or worse, injury.

But not to worry! Today I’m going to share with you the top 10 most common workout mistakes that people ALWAYS make. We’ll take a look at what the exercise should look and feel like, and how you can easily fix any mistakes you’re making to avoid injury and maximize your results.

Workout Mistakes

10 Of The Most Common Workout Mistakes & How To Fix

Exercising can be tricky. If you’re unfamiliar with how an exercise is supposed to look, or more importantly, how it’s supposed to feel, you might be guilty of these common exercise mistakes. 


1. Planks

Planks are, by far, one of the most common exercises people do improperly. They’re also one of the most important because they not only teach you how to engage your core while it’s under tension, but they also build the strength of the core muscles to improve your overall form and technique during other exercises. The primary muscle groups used during a plank are all of the muscles in your core, shoulders, triceps, and even your quads. 

Proper plank posture

What You’re Doing Wrong


How To Fix



2. Sit-ups

If you want to earn yourself a set of six-pack abs but don’t have any equipment, sit-ups are a great option. The primary muscles used during a sit-up are, of course, your abs! If you feel pain in your neck, or too much tension in your hip flexors, you might be guilty of one of these exercise mistakes… 

sit-ups posture

What You’re Doing Wrong


How To Fix



3. Standard Push-ups 

Dear push-ups, I feel like so many of us have a love-hate relationship with you all thanks to childhood P.E. trauma… but, you are essential for building optimal upper body strength, so I digress. When performing a standard push-up, you should feel the tension in your chest, triceps, abs, and quads. 

push-up form

What You’re Doing Wrong


How To Fix



4. Lunges

Lunges are great for toning and strengthening your legs and booty! The primary muscles used are your glutes, quads, hamstrings, and calves. Performing lunges incorrectly can often lead to patellar tendonitis. This is when the tendon in your kneecap becomes inflamed due to stress. Not only is this painful and uncomfortable during exercise, but also increases your risk of worsening the injury.

Proper lunges form

What You’re Doing Wrong


How To Fix



5. Triceps dips

Tricep dips are primarily used to strengthen the short-head of the triceps brachii. This means that when you perform a tricep dip, the position you’re moving into activates the back of your arm to help build strength.

Proper Triceps Dips Form

What You’re Doing Wrong


How To Fix



6. Donkey Kicks

This is a staple exercise if you’re looking to get a perky, toned tush! A common misconception about the donkey kick is the higher you kick, the more muscles you’re working. I’m happy to report that in this case, putting in too much effort can actually cause you more harm than good. So, you can actually put in a little less effort and still maximize your results.

Proper Donkey Kicks Form

What You’re Doing Wrong


How To Fix



7. Overhead Presses

An overhead press involves lifting a weight (or weights) above your head. I can’t stress enough how important it is to use proper form and technique during any weighted exercise. If you can’t complete a weighted exercise with good form, I highly recommend mastering a bodyweight exercise before graduating to weights, or finding an appropriate weight for your skill level. The primary muscles used in an overhead press are your shoulders, traps, and lats. 

Proper Overhead Press Form

What You’re Doing Wrong


How To Fix



8. Standard Deadlifts

A standard deadlift is a full-body exercise that uses most of the muscles in your body—the primary muscles being the quads, hamstrings, glutes, lower back, and traps. It’s a great total body exercise to add to your routine if you can master the form and technique.

Proper deadlift form

What You’re Doing Wrong


How To Fix



9. Romanian Deadlifts

A Romanian deadlift, while similar to the traditional deadlift, is merely done with straight legs, not bent. The primary muscles used in this style of deadlift are mainly on your glutes, hamstrings, and lower back. 

Proper romanian deadlift form

What You’re Doing Wrong


How To Fix



10. Bent Over Rows

Bent over rows are an excellent exercise for your back and arms! However, people often approach this exercise with improper form which can dilute the benefits!

Proper bent over rows

What You’re Doing Wrong


How To Fix

What Else Can You Do To Prevent Workout Mistakes?

When you have weak bones, joints, and muscles, it makes these workout mistakes even harder to avoid. In fact, people who have poor bone and joint health are more likely to experience an athletic-related injury compared to those with healthy bones! Thankfully, there is something you can do to minimize your risk of injury. The easiest and most cost-effective solution to heal achy joints or weak bones and muscles is to take a collagen supplement, like SkinnyFit Super Youth, twice a day. 

Collagen is the most abundant protein in our bodies and is considered the “glue” that holds everything together. It’s responsible for keeping our bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles, and even our hair, skin, and nails operating in top condition. As we age, our collagen storage starts to decline (around the ages of 25-30), and the physical signs of aging start to appear—often causing achy joints and muscles, brittle bones, excess soreness, and even injury.

To learn more about how collagen can help you avoid injuries in the future, check out 5 Undeniable Reasons You Will Benefit From Taking Collagen For Joints.

Super Youth for Bone and Joint Health

The Bottom Line On Workout Mistakes

Anyone can find themselves performing an exercise incorrectly, but it’s important to remember that these types of workout mistakes can be fixed! Correcting poor form can prevent muscular imbalances, postural issues, and even injury. You can replenish your body of its natural collagen and combat bone and joint issues by taking two scoops of Super Youth daily.

SkinnyFit Super Youth

About The Author

Liz Brown

Fitness & Nutrition Expert (CPT., FNS.)

Liz is a health & wellness expert, writer, and editor with over a decade of experience in the fitness & nutrition industry. She emphasizes research and simplifies complex topics to help make healthy living simple and sustainable. When she isn't researching and writing, she's sharing delicious recipes, easy DIYs, and home decor tips on her blog and social media.

More from Liz, visit: Personal Blog, TikTok, Instagram


  • NASM Certified Personal Trainer(since 2012)
  • NASM Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist (since 2014)
  • Credentialed Coach Practitioner, Coach Training Academy
  • B.A. Liberal Studies (Health & Nutrition Sciences)
  • A.A. Liberal Arts (STEM)

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