Despite the common belief that all exercises are safe, effective and good, it is vital to understand that some exercises pose high risks (especially for people with joint, muscle and other health complications). Some of the most common things that make an exercise risky or outright dangerous include:
· Unnatural or unusual movement patterns in exercise
· Movements that cause discomfort or pain
· Movements that enhance muscular imbalances
· Movements that require extreme joint flexibility that is above your range of motion
· Exercises with risk of injury that outweighs potential benefits of the exercise.
Here are some of the exercises that are considered to have great potential risk for causing injury:
1. Back arches
Exercises that involve extreme stretching of the lower back including back aches are can be dangerous. These movements place excessive strain on your lower back and can be potentially dangerous especially when performed in a bouncing manner. Although ensuring regular extension of the lower back is very important, strengthening and stretching should be done in a slow and controlled (passive) manner.
2. Straight leg sit ups
This exercise is associated with several potential risks. By keeping your legs straight, you exercise the abdominals as well as the hip flexors. When hip flexors contract, they cause a forward tilt of your pelvis and hyper-extension of the lower back. Therefore, straight leg sit ups strengthen the hip flexors but the abdominals will remain relatively weak. On the other hand, this exercise strains the lower back.
A great alternative for this exercise is the curl-up which is performed as a partial sit up with the knees bent. Therefore, curl-ups can exercise the abdominals efficiently and safely. Strengthening your abdominal muscles is a great way of relieving low back pain.