The Problem with Articles About Exercise
Just a few days ago, we saw this (old) article shared on social media. I’m sure we looked at it back in 2013, but I couldn’t help myself from taking another look, especially with such a bold title: “The 5 exercise machines you should never use at the gym.” Companies put more money than you’d expect into the R&D (research and development) aspect of creating fitness equipment, so it’s hard to believe there’d be a machine you should never use at the gym, right?
Yes and no.
There really aren’t many pieces of equipment that a legitimate gym would have that should be avoided by every person. Gimmick products that you see on TV such as the new “Squat Magic” would be on that list, but that was surely created in an effort to make money fast. Even with those gimmicks, if performed properly by the right person, calories are going to be burned, at the very least.
We’re well aware that News Outlets (and any form of media) have a tendency to offer titles that are going to make you click on their link, whether the article actually reinforces that idea or not. In this case, in THIS article, it seems as though there might have been a small game of telephone. We’re not sure who this “metabolic training expert” is, but the article states he is a C.S.C.S (Certified Strength and Conditioning Expert), which is an extremely legitimate certification in the fitness industry. It almost looks as if he originally wrote this article for one site before it was taken by another and finally found its way here, where we found it. What a mess, right?
The issue is, most people who would take this article seriously wouldn’t think about any of that and would read that an “expert” is telling you to NEVER use the: lying leg press, seated leg extension, seated chest press, hip abductor/adductor and loaded standing calf press. Now, to be fair, there are alternatives offered for each of those, in order: goblet squat, step ups, push-ups, single-leg squat, bodyweight standing calf raise. On top of all that, the article presents short arguments for why you shouldn’t use the equipment named, and of course, why you should use the alternatives offered.
Now, we don’t want to get carried away by this one article since the point is for your to be more aware of the overall problem with articles about exercise. We want to further encourage you to find someone that can help you figure out the best training program for you. We’d estimate that there are thousands of people who physically can’t substitute the machines listed in this article for the alternatives. One of the most extreme examples would be substituting the hip adductor/abductor machine for single-leg squats. The risk of injury is far greater with the latter exercise.
Again, this article was originally written, supposedly, by an individual that underwent an extreme body transformation and worked for a publication that has a reputation for putting profit above all. This article is clearly catered for individuals without injuries, but without the proper disclaimers (which most exercise articles fail to have) you can far too easily take this out of context and think it is meant for you.
Be careful out there because knowing when to question what is right and what is wrong when it comes to what you’re doing for your health & wellness, is crucial in your journey to become hungry and fit!