Ever done an exercise and not really felt it in the muscle that you should be feeling it in?
Or worse, feeling it in areas that you really shouldn't be...
Technique is the way you perform an exercise in order to target specific muscle groups.
Without proper technique, your results won't be as good as they could be. As you may not be using the correct muscles, or getting as much out of them as you should be, your body may be positioned incorrectly, or not using your correct range of motion.
And you could be putting yourself at risk of injury. Sometimes these injuries could be quick, such as pulling your lower back if not lifting correctly. Or they may result slowly over time from improper technique, weaknesses and instability in areas of your body.
Sometimes you may not even be aware your technique is not right, as you may be unsure of how to do that particular exercise correctly anyway, or haven't learnt how to engage/contract that specific muscle because you haven't yet developed a good neural connection with that muscle.
Technique can also break down due to using too much weight. Causing your body to shift into a different position, or recruit other muscles to handle the load. Sometimes, less is more. Dropping back down to a weight you can handle, to do the set better, with good form and range, and get more out of the target muscles.
You also have to trust where you learn/copy exercises from; watching other people in the gym and copying isn't often going to be a good idea, as they too could be doing something wrong. Some picture/video sources online, or even bad trainers could be teaching you wrong technique and not getting the best out of the exercise, or putting you at risk.
Always pay attention to your form throughout an exercise. Every exercise differs, but here are some general cues that can apply to some exercises; - Maintain a neutrally positioned spine - Keep head positioned neutral with spine - Keeping your abdominal muscles tight (Think as if about to be punched in the stomach) - Pulling shoulder blades down and back (Think into back pockets) - Diaphragmatic breathing on each rep - breathe in through nose as lower the weight, breathe out through mouth as lift the weight.
So it is always, always worth learning from and working with a professional coach, to ensure your getting the best from every exercise selected for you and your goals, being coached properly and given good cues, using proper technique, using the correct muscles, and training safely.
If you need help with your training and/or technique, contact me about 1-2-1 training here