Squats on a BOSU balliStock/Rich Legg
The BOSU ball—half exercise ball, half flat platform—can add an element of instability to your workout. But doing squats or other moves while standing on the rounded side of the ball may actually set you up for injury. “Unless you’re a top athlete you’ll likely have worse form,” says Lindsey Wismer, a personal trainer and nurse practitioner at Merritt Health and Wellness in Portland, Oregon. Your knees and ankles may roll in or out, causing a breakdown in alignment all the way through your body. Stick with traditional squats or wall squats, where you have your back against a wall and your knees directly over your ankles. Here are more secrets personal trainers won’t tell you.
You know that head forward, rounded shoulders posture that you get from reading your phone or sitting at your computer? That’s the same body position as a crunch, says Wismer. “Because most people do a crunch by pulling up on the head, not by using the abs, all this move does is reinforce that bad posture.” For a more effective move, use your legs instead: lying on your back, lift your legs to the sky, and lower them partway down—until you feel your core really tighten—then lift them back up. Also: Try these tricks to get a flat belly (without a lick of exercise!).