If you don't know your way around a weight room, heading to the gym can be intimidating -- and even dangerous. But paying attention to a few simple rules of proper technique can make you slimmer, stronger and healthier all over.
That's why we asked John Romaniello, trainer, author and founder of Roman Fitness Systems to show us what's what when it comes to strength training.
In the coming weeks, he'll be helping us tackle some of the most common mistakes we all make while toning, plus tips and tricks for perfect form. This week, we're kicking things off with the pushup.
The Faux Pas: "With pushups, most people screw up posture," Romaniello tells The Huffington Post. "Instead of a straight line, they wind up looking like a curve. The collapse usually happens at the lower back, and is caused by a lack of attention to core strength."
The Fix: "Start with your butt higher in the air, and hit the ground chest first," he says. "During the set, actively draw the belly button in toward the spine, which will activate the core muscles."
Now it's your turn. Evaluate your pushup form in a mirror, then try the tips above. Tell us how it goes in the comments below, and be sure to check back over the following weeks to fix your squats, lunges, planks, crunches and more.
Photos by Damon Dahlen, AOL
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