Technique is the basis of every pursuit.
Over time I have realized the importance of proper technique. I have experienced firsthand the consequences of incorrect technique and I have also seen people suffer from incorrect technique.
Outside of injury I have seen people become discouraged because they are not getting the gains in fitness or the benefits they feel they should. Most times this is due to incorrect technique. From incorrect mechanics to not understanding the process of resistance training at all.
Technique can be defined as a way of carrying out a particular task or procedure. I like to expand the definition to include carrying out the workout to completion. It makes sense I think. If you have sound technique when executing a move, or moves whether it’s resistance training or stretching, etc., if the workout is not put together to help you achieve your objective than it’s not really accomplishing what it should be.
Technique can relate to many things too. Breathing, length of gait when running, intensity and interval length when incorporating HIIT into your workout. Technique can also be the frequency you train muscle groups, the amount of rest needed between workouts. I’m not trying to make it complicated. I’m trying to expand our thinking on how we look at technique when working out.
If your goal is to maximize every workout, to squeeze as much out of it as possible and to reach your designated goal as soon as possible, then these are things you want to be aware of. If you are looking to exercise and reduce the risk of injury and still reach your goal then you can start with focusing on understanding proper mechanics when working out, and incorporate these things later. Keep it simple and don’t overload yourself. Remember, this needs to be fun! If it isn’t, then why would you do it? If you think it can’t be fun then maybe you need to change what you are doing. Otherwise you risk burning out, and finding ways to avoid your workout.
What are our options to learn about technique? If you are looking to improve your technique in the gym, or where ever it is you workout, then you might want to start with getting a personal trainer. A personal trainer can help you with technique but also many other things such as creating a workout program that incorporates all aspects of training; warm up, workout, stretching, cardio, etc.
If you are someone who is looking to specialize in a certain activity such as running then you might want to sign up for a running course. It’s common for us to think we already know how to do these things, because we do – in a basic sense. All of us can run as an example. But, all of us can learn to run more efficiently, better, and lessen the risk of injury.
I would caution against using Youtube or any video service as your source of learning proper body mechanics for an exercise. Although it may give you instructions on what to do, it’s only one way and there isn’t anyone there to correct your mistakes.
Keeping it simple
I like to keep it simple. By not incorporating proper technique, in a sense, it becomes more complicated. Dealing with setbacks, injuries, lack of gains, and lack of motivation. Think of it as empowering yourself with knowledge. And with that knowledge you will have a much better understanding of why you are doing things a certain way and how doing these things will make you stronger, faster, or more flexible.
Give it a shot. I think you’ll be glad you did.
Yours in health,