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.
He'll be helping us tackle some of the most common mistakes we all make while building muscle, plus giving us tips and tricks for better form. This week, we're perfecting the side lunge.
The Faux Pas: "The mistake with lateral lunges is that people collapse at the knee instead of the hip," says Romaniello, which will greatly tax the quad muscle without much help from the butt or hips.
The Fix: "Focus on bending at the waist by engaging the glutes, allowing you to keep the back straight," he says. Sit back into the lunge, almost as you would when doing a squat.
Tell us how it goes in the comments below, and be sure to check back over the following weeks to fix your bench press, bicycle crunches and more.
Check out more in our Fix Your Form series below:
Photos by Damon Dahlen, AOL
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