We all need to work out. That’s a fact of life. Exercise is essential to improving or maintaining our wellbeing. It makes our bodies function at optimum and might even make us look like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

However, as good as exercise is, some workouts can put your body at risk of injury. This is especially the case with people who have prior conditions, injuries or pregnant women. We’re not saying don’t work out, but do believe you should be in the know of workouts that are a high risk, so let’s identify them.

Crunches: Bicycle-Style and Regular

The crunch is great for improving your core, balance and giving you abs of steel. It’s a great exercise when done right, but if you’re doing it wrong, it can cause a myriad of problems. One of them is cervical spine injuries if you crane your neck. Even worse, you can also suffer from disk herniation if you’re doing it too fast. To get it right, follow these instructions.

This exercise shouldn’t be practiced by pregnant women under any circumstance, as it places a lot of weight on your back. This can result in severe spinal injuries, which can lead to complications while in and/or after pregnancy.

Heavy lifting

This is another kind of training pregnant women shouldn’t practice at all. If you’re in your third trimester, completely avoid lifting weights as your hormones make your body malleable, which increases the chances of injury.

What’s more, beginners need to stay away from lifting more than they can handle. It might seem like you’re capable of lifting heavier weights, but because your body is not accustomed to it, it can quickly experience muscle tears and other injuries.

Lat Pull-Downs and Shoulder Press

As you might know these exercises put a lot of stress on the anterior joint capsules of the shoulder. Done wrong and they can result in tearing within the rotator cuff or impingement. Up to 2 million people in the United States visit doctors as a result of the injury and it is one of the most common causes of disability.

If you suffer from this injury, you won’t be able to do the most basic of movements such as combing your hair. So do these exercises right by reading these instructions.

Bent over rows

This is a weightlifting technic that concentrates on your middle back. It’s plain to see why this might be a complicated exercise, and where the injuries might occur. Fitness trainers and doctors often site bending over at the waist as the number one cause of injury. If you’re doing so, you could potentially displace a disc, which could potentially strike a nerve. To avoid injury you should read these instructions.

Seated leg extensions

Because this exercise focuses on the four muscles on your upper leg and thigh (quadriceps), it can wear down your cartilage if done wrong. The workout can also damage knee joints. It’s important to keep all your muscles engaged at all times and also use your stomach muscles instead of your back. You don’t want to strain your back. If you flex your toes, you’re risking putting out your hip flexors.

There are plenty more exercises that you might be doing wrong. It’s essential to always follow instructions when doing them. Pregnant women and people with prior injuries in or close to the areas we’ve mentioned, should avoid doing these workouts. If you’re unsure of whether or not a workout is good for you, speak to a doctor or trainer. Happy exercising!