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Thread: Smith Machine vs Squat Rack for squats

  1. #1
    Wannabebig Member
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    Smith Machine vs Squat Rack for squats

    Hey guys,

    I was lifting today and noticed that the Smith Machine I was using by Body Master is attached to a counter weight. Does this weight have an affect on making the weight you are using easier to lift? I use the Smith Machine as opposed to the squat rack because I feel it's safer. If there is a difference between the amount of weight you can lift can you post the formula? For example, with Smith Machine you squat 80% of what you can with a squat rack. This is just something I was thinking about today and when I did a search couldn't find anything relevant.

    Let me know.
    Journal: randommetalguy's Training Log
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  3. #3
    Just watch me ... Built's Avatar
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    PS change your sig. You don't squat 300. I'll be interested to see what your squat ACTUALLY is once you drape an Oly bar across your shoulders and drop down below parallel.

  4. #4
    feelin like a beast dougyp's Avatar
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    I can't imagine squatting with the smith... I imagine if would feel awkward. I can't imagine what kind of counterweight you're talking about, but I fully agree with Built. Based on your original post, you might what to follow her advice, just to save face.

  5. #5
    Senior Member HeavyBomber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Built View Post
    It is NOT safer.

    It is also not a squat. Please don't use that thing for anything but chinups.
    I agree except maybe you could do standing calf raises too. lol

    Seriously, do yourself a favor and forget the smith is even there.

  6. #6
    Squat Heavy, Squat Often Cards's Avatar
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    smith machine is the devil, no but seriously it is. Use a squat rack you will thank your self later on.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member Jorge Sanchez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Built View Post
    PS change your sig. You don't squat 300. I'll be interested to see what your squat ACTUALLY is once you drape an Oly bar across your shoulders and drop down below parallel.
    I'm guessing 135 will be a struggle.

    Seriously, don't be an idiot and try to squat the same amount of weight you were using in the smith machine.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Built View Post
    It is NOT safer.

    It is also not a squat. Please don't use that thing for anything but chinups.
    Quoted for emphasis.

  9. #9
    Wannabebig Member dpdd's Avatar
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    My gym has no squat rack, all it has is the smith machine and 4 benchs.

    There arent any other gyms close enough to join either!
    Last edited by dpdd; 04-02-2008 at 11:17 AM.

  10. #10
    Who me? Chubrock's Avatar
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    I say use the Smith Machine.

    Fuck, fight, or hold the light.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Jorge Sanchez's Avatar
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    I say front squat.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Steven001's Avatar
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    Do hack squats, they're a killer!
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  13. #13
    ANVIL POWER Detard's Avatar
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    +1 for front squats.

    Clean the weight up and squat it. Or unrack it from a bench and front/back squat it.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Built View Post
    PS change your sig. You don't squat 300. I'll be interested to see what your squat ACTUALLY is once you drape an Oly bar across your shoulders and drop down below parallel.
    I know I don't squat 300 it's a short term goal of mine. I based my goal on using the Smith machine and that's why I set it at 300. I squatted 275 using the Smith machine yesterday when I was maxing out and that's when I noticed the cables and everything on the machine and figured they were helping the squat in some fashion and that's why I started this thread.

    ---

    Because of the overwhelming response of not to use the Smith machine I'm going to start doing doing them on a squat rack. But just because I'm curious (and pretty much a newbie to strength training) what is so unsafe about using the machine? I think my form still checks out, I can get my thighs parallel to the floor using the machine. I'll also have to edit my sig and have a new goal to shoot for because the squat rack will definitely be harder.
    Journal: randommetalguy's Training Log
    Goal: 1,000 lb combined weight of big three by May 14, 2011
    Current: Flat bench press 195, Squat: 315, Dead lift: 265, Total (as of 03/01/11): 775

  15. #15
    Former Fatass Unreal's Avatar
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    I bet you have issues doing real 155lbs squats. The machine does tons of stabilization for you, and most of the bars are counterweighted so they don't weigh anything. The smith also makes your knees and torso move in a unnatural bad way.
    Nick V

  16. #16
    Just watch me ... Built's Avatar
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    Good for you for letting us collectively shame/bully you into doing real squats!

    Seriously, you'll be humbled in the gym when you do this, but your 40-year old self will thank you down the line for it.

    I'm probably your mom's age and I can front squat 160 for a triple. Knees are fine - and it's because I squat below parallel and don't use Smith for it. Smith forces your torso to remain perfectly upright - so no stabilizers get involved, and any shift in movement is forced onto the knees - functionally you shove your femur over your tibia - a "shear" force that is taken up by the knee.

    Start lighter than you think you should, work your form in multiple low-rep sets. Train the movement. If you have trouble getting the balance point, do box squats, reach that ass BACK and push through your heels. If this is a problem, do as I do: fronts.

  17. #17
    THE FRIDGE! thewicked's Avatar
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    smith machine is HORRIBLE! don't even get me started..

    i'll just say if you want safety that's what the cage is for and setting the pins. Your body isn't designed to work on a "fixed" plane of movement and that's what the smith forces you to do..leading to injuries and alot of other things. i'd type more but you get the idea.
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  18. #18
    Senior Member HeavyBomber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Built View Post
    Good for you for letting us collectively shame/bully you into doing real squats!

    Seriously, you'll be humbled in the gym when you do this, but your 40-year old self will thank you down the line for it. ...[clip]...
    He was an awful good sport about it wasn't he? I probably couldn't have taken that. lol

    Built is right. I'm 38, been squatting and DLing for years, no back problems, no knees problems, in fact both are healthier than ever.

    Good deal dude.

  19. #19
    SchModerator ZenMonkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HeavyBomber View Post
    He was an awful good sport about it wasn't he? I probably couldn't have taken that. lol

    Built is right. I'm 38, been squatting and DLing for years, no back problems, no knees problems, in fact both are healthier than ever.

    Good deal dude.
    it is blasphemy after all
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  20. #20
    Senior Member Klotz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Built View Post
    It is NOT safer.

    It is also not a squat. Please don't use that thing for anything but chinups.
    No, you can also use it to practice JiuJitsu

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3Jt3YU87oA
    (Go to 2:20)

  21. #21
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    Steps for squatting on a Smith Machine

    1. Don't

    2. Repeat

  22. #22
    feelin like a beast dougyp's Avatar
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    No, you can also use it to practice JiuJitsu
    I hope you're joking. That was the stupidest thing I've ever seen. The only way to practice jiu-jitsu is with another human being. Foolish.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Klotz's Avatar
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    Obviously. He was just doing it for kicks.

  24. #24
    Breaker of Skulls Guido's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bell View Post
    Steps for squatting on a Smith Machine

    1. Don't

    2. Repeat
    LOL

    That's the best advice I've seen yet.
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  25. #25
    No Crybabies! IronGrip IV's Avatar
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    I've been doing real man squats for 3 weeks and loving it! Not sure what all I'll do with my smith machine once I put it back together.
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