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Lifting Tip: Form Is More Important Than Weight

When strength training, it may seem that if you use a heavier set of dumbbells, you can save time on your sessions. More weight means fewer reps, right? Well, not exactly. Form is more important than how much you can lift. So if you're struggling with 10-pound weights when doing your bicep curls, you'll end up hunching your back and pressing your hips forward, which could result in a pulled muscle or other injury. Also, correct form will ensure that you're targeting the specific muscle you're trying to work in each move.

A good rule of thumb is to choose a weight that tires your muscles out after the 10th or 12th rep. By the end of your set, you should still be able to maintain correct form. If you can't, do fewer reps or choose a slightly lighter weight.

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GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 8 years
I agree -- form is important. Form is important in every exercise -- jogging, swimming, cycling, dancing, etc. Personally, I like doing bicep curls. For weight training, I like to focus on one major muscle at a time. It feels good to me. Besides, during my other workouts, I get plenty of multi-muscle activities (jogging, dancing, etc.). These are full-body workouts.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 8 years
puppyears my book says the exact same thing about bicep curls - all the excersies in the book are designed to work more then ONE muscle...because its not natural movement to use only ONE muscle.
PuppyEars PuppyEars 8 years
As a trainer and a woman I disagree with this 'tip'. If you're injured and trying to work on joint flexibility then light weights are fine. Building muscle requires you to seriously challenge your body. If you aren't working hard on reps 3 and 4 you aren't lifting weights, you're doing cardio. Also, bicep curls are the BIGGEST waste of time. Valuable weight exercises should focus on mutli muscle activities - squats are a great example.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 8 years
Hmmm honestly I jsut purchased a book in which I am following called "The New Rules of Lifting for Women: by Lou Schuler. VERY good book...focuses on building muscle, triming down and eating A LOT (thank god!)...here is a quote he has to say about bad form "...you'll rarely see a women deviate from the textbook description of the excersie...even if it means she has to use unchallenging weights to make such precision possible. I'd never advocate bad form. But there's mroe to strength training then coloring inside the lines. IF IT'S WHAT YOUR BODY IS DESIGNED TO DO, IT'S PROBABLY NOT BAD FORM. AND IF THE EXCERSIE REQUIRES YOU TO DO SOMETHING UNNATURAL (THAT COULD HURT YOU), MAYBE YOU SHOULD THINK TWICE BEFORE DOING IT."
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