ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Five Exercises That Are a Waste of Time

Updated on November 25, 2011

If you're not seeing the fitness results that you want, you might be making some mistakes in the gym. Certain exercises are waste of time and might even cause injury. If you're doing any of these exercises, it's time that you started a new routine.

Adductor and Abductor Machine

The belief behind this machine is it will strengthen and tone the inner and outer part of your thigh. The problem is you can't spot reduce and by spending your time moving your legs in and out, you're not going to reach your fitness goals. Another issue with this machine is it isn't a functional movement, meaning it won't help you in sports or in your every-day activities. Instead, strengthen the lower body with squats, lunges or step-ups.

Walking at an Incline Holding On

Walking is a great form of cardiovascular exercise and adding incline is a great way to strengthen your legs and increase caloric burn. But if you put the speed and incline so high that you have to hold on for dear-life, you have now taken a great exercise and made it a lot less effective. Holding on to the treadmill creates improper alignment and can cause back problems or other injuries. Holding on also reduces the amount of calories you burn because you've eliminated work from the legs and transferred the workload back to the machine. Decrease the speed or incline and focus on not holding on to get better results. If you want to build up to faster speeds and higher incline, do intervals on the higher elevations so you don't have to hold on.

Ab Machine

We all want great looking abs but doing repetitions on any abdominal machine, won't get you that flat stomach. The first problem is you're able to cheat by using your legs, arms or back to help pull your abs together. Another problem is if you have low back injuries or pain, this machine can amplify the injury and pain because of the pressure this movement puts on the discs. The idea that we should be able to crunch lots of weight together is another problem for this machine. More effective ab exercises include the bicycle maneuver, reverse crunch or the captains chair.

Lat Pull-Down Behind the Head

This move is very common among old-fashioned exercises. This move is unnatural for the body, not functional and can cause injuries. Pulling the bar behind your head causes the head to move forward into poor alignment, which can lead to shoulder injuries, neck pain and bad posture. Since you're trying to strengthen the lat muscle or the upper back, pulling the bar in front of you works the muscle in the same way in a lot safer way.

Upright Row

The upright row targets the shoulders and the upper back muscle. The problem with this exercise is the position your arms must go in order to complete this exercise. Bringing your elbows straight out to the sides above the shoulder joint causes impingement on the shoulder muscles, joints and nerves. Crunching the shoulder muscles and nerves over and over will cause damage and pain. Instead of upright rows to develop shapely shoulders, do front or lateral shoulder raises lifting weights out to the front or side of the body, stopping the weight slightly below the shoulders.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • jbrock2041 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Park City, UT

      Todd- yes, your key words are done correctly, which often does not happen and when that's the case, you can cause shoulder injuries and rotator cuff problems. But I'm glad that you have not had any injuries and been able to do them successfully.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      For the most part fine, I personally have found upright rows one of the best exercises to develop the delts and traps if done correctly. Been doing them for years and never had a proble,

    • phdast7 profile image

      Theresa Ast 

      6 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      Good Hub. Simple and clear explanations of the problems that these exercises can cause. Very helpful.

    • jbrock2041 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Park City, UT

      Thank you Dedmoroz. Using the adductor/abductor machine definitely isn't the worse exercise that you can do, it's just that other exercises are a lot more effective.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Hi Julie,

      Another wonderful hub! Was quite surprised at the first one, altough I see now why it's not the ideal way to strengthen your lower body.

      I'm always interested about reading physical and mental health.


    • profile image


      6 years ago

      The lat pull down behind the head has always felt uncomfortable to me..front pull downs from now on..thanks for the tips

    • stayingalivemoma profile image

      Valerie Washington 

      6 years ago from Tempe, Arizona

      Thanks for the tips! I bet a lot of people will be surprised!

    • profile image

      John Hansen 

      6 years ago

      excellent advise


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)