Walk into any gym and you'll find the dedicated, the people who know what they are doing, and the people who have no idea what a barbell is.
There are quite a few exercises and machines that aren't worth doing, but there are six "social media exercises" that are more an ego lift than anything. If you currently do any of these worthless exercises, chances are you aren't doing any exercises that actually build muscle.
Related - 10 Exercises for Lower Back Pain Relief
Below are six exercises you should stop doing, and 6 exercises that you need to start performing if you haven't yet.
6 Exercises That Are Worthless to Perform
#1 - Crunches
If your goal is to get six pack abs, chances are you do at least 1000 of these per day... How's that working out for you?
The sad thing about this exercise is that it's overused and without proper training of the antagonistic muscles, you're going to have problems down the road.
While crunches are alright to add into your home routine, doing crunches for your only core exercise is dumb.
#2 - Bench Dips
Look, we get it... You want your bros to pile up a stack of plates on your legs on top of the yoga mat you probably stole from that old lady.
This exercise is supposed to work your triceps, but with so many individuals with a messed up posture, you're a ticking time bomb for messed up shoulders.
Seriously, no one cares how much weight you can quarter dip on the bench. Quit taking up so much time and space and pick some better triceps exercises.
#3 - Hip Thrusters
Another exercise extremely popular on social media and to the perverts watching, this exercise doesn't do any justice to your posterior chain.
Hip thrusters are like going to the gym and hitting Dunkin' Donuts after... It just doesn't make sense. If you want to hit your posterior chain, you should try this exercise called a "barbell back squat." Another suitable posterior chain exercise are "good mornings."
Both of these exercises are usually performed on leg day. And by performed, I mean not even given a second thought about.
#4 - Smith Machine Squats
Let's be serious... The smith machine anything sucks. It forces your body to perform the movement on rails and it isn't natural at all.
Smith machine squats are appealing because you can wedge your legs under a bunch of plates all while making it look like you squat. I'm sure you've put the stops pretty high so that you "don't go too low" but we all know that you are just wasting your time.
Smith machine squats, presses, or even looking at the smith machine will ruin your gains.
#5 - Behind The Neck Overhead Press
While this exercise is great for removing pecs from the equation, many simply do not have the posture or mobility to safely perform them.
If you can't put your back up to a wall and easily raise your hands behind you and touch the wall, don't try this exercise. It looks cool, but you're going to cause major damage if you are not careful.
#6 - Bosu Ball Anything
If you're using a bosu ball for any exercise, you must have some great insurance. Bosu ball training is unique because it is supposed to work stabilizer muscles, but in reality, it's more of a wish to get injured.
If you are able to jump up onto the ball at all, you should feel accomplished and go home. Get under the bar and put your dues in if you want to make some gains.
RANT! Squats are NOT bad for you - Stop being a SISSY!
6 Exercises That Should Be in Your Routine
If you haven't found a great workout routine, simply progressing with these 6 exercises will build an impressive physique. There's no replacement for good old-fashioned hard work under the iron.
#1 - Squats
One of the best exercises you can perform, squats are a great full body workout. While most stress is on your posterior chain and core, squats elicit a hormonal response that will help your whole body grow. There's no secret that all big squatters are jacked.
If you've never done a squat before, practice with goblet squats. This helps you figure out how to hinge at the hips and not your knees.
There's a legend that says squats cure cancer.
#2 - Bench Press
I'm sure you're doing these, but I wanted to add this into the "do" list. The bench press is a great compound workout that builds chest, arms, and upper back. When properly performed, your whole body should be sore afterwards.
Don't lift your legs up, don't use gloves, and seriously quit doing these on that bosu ball.
#3 - Deadlifts
One of my personal favorite lifts, deadlifts may be the king of lifts in regards to overall strength. The most primal move is to pick something off of the ground, so this can unleash the inner beast.
Before you jump into too much weight, make sure you understand how to deadlift and make sure you practice form over weight. Jumping up weight in the beginning before ingraining proper form into your setup will lead to bad habits and a huge plateau later on down the road.
Deadlifts are another full body exercise with emphasis on your posterior chain and back.
#4 - Dips
When done correctly, dips are a great upper body workout that builds massive arms. A slight change in grip width or body positioning also can hit portions of your chest.
One warning about dips, many people have immobile shoulders and can cause damage from dips if you go further than your shoulder can naturally move. Proceed with caution, or use an assisted dip machine.
#5 - Two Hand Overhead Triceps Extension
This triceps exercise is often overlooked due to the difficulty of getting the weight above your head without help. Two hand overhead triceps extensions are great for building beefy triceps, works your core the whole exercise, and take minimal equipment to do.
While it won't take you long to get into heavy dumbbells, don't let your ego drive you to an injury.
#6 - Planks
There are many articles stating how useful planks are, and how bad they are. Planks, when used properly, can add muscular endurance and strength to your core, and teaches you to put your mind over the pain.
Isometric holds are a great way to get that extra percent of gains without taking any equipment. Completing three sets of planks for as long as you can, will be plenty of core work when mixed with heavy squats and deadlifts.
Wrapping It Up
Next time you see another video of someone with a stack of 45s on their legs doing quarter bench dips, know that they are just trying to impress you... Nothing more.
If you've not fallen into the trap of trying these worthless exercises, good job. If you have been completing them, try to incorporate more useful exercises into your routine instead of blaming your genetics.
Cutty Strength is a vision I’ve had since 2013 and has grown into something bigger than I ever thought possible. I changed gears and started writing strength training and powerlifting articles to provide more detailed information to help powerlifters and lifters who are interested in strength training.
* Tiger Fitness does not imply any medical advice in this article. There are no guarantees of specific results and results may vary. Please consult your family Dr. before starting any diet or training program.