The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
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The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

Itís no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
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  1. #1
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    At my gym, it would be very difficult and inconvenient for me to do barbell rows. Is it better than dumbbell rows? What's the difference and would it be alright for me to do the dumbbell rows instead?

    Also, I use the Smith machine for squats, hack squats, and military press because my back isn't so great (injured). Would this still help me much using the Smith machine instead of free barbells?

    One more thing for now, Incline Dumbbell Press is just like Incline bench press except you use dumbbells, right? What's the difference besides the barbell/dumbbell? Thanks
    Last edited by jww13; 07-19-2001 at 02:07 PM.

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  3. #2
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    Re dumbell/bb

    Listen mate if you do the dumbells exercise in a very strict form which is btw very difficult if you are a beginner! Also it would be difficult to add weight and mantain form!

    However with a barbell you can mantain more easly form, as all other excercises! If it is absolutly impossible to do them on a bar then do them on a smith machine!

    Yes you can do them ! It was even published on M&Fitness magazine if you don't believe me!!
    WIsh you luck

    Majsi = aka Big_R

  4. #3
    Geordie The_Chicken_Daddy's Avatar
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    I prefer DB rows.

    Did them earlier infact. Ace.
    Last edited by The_Chicken_Daddy; 07-19-2001 at 02:25 PM.
    "Geordie/'d3c:di/n. & adj. Brit colloq. n. 1 a native of Tyneside. 2 the dialect spoken on Tyneside. adj. of or relating to Tyneside, its people, or its dialect. [the name George + -IE]

  5. #4
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    are you refering to the 2 arm dumbelll row or just one arm i m refering to the 2 arm!

  6. #5
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    If you have access to hammer strength seated rows do them! IMO they kick ass compared to barbell rows and dumbell rows

  7. #6
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    JWW13,

    If you cannot do the barbell rows at your gym, then, in my opinion, the dumbell row is an excellent alternative. I and many other respected trainers choose the dumbell version over the barbell (partly because you can adapt a wave of motion suited to yourself). Using correct form is important here though. Make sure you raise the db slowly with no deep stretch from the bottom (this places unnecessary stress on the shoulder joints). If possible take the db from a raised platform. I assume you know how to perform this movement, i.e. with one knee placed on a flat bench and one arm supporting. At the top position make sure you squeeze and crush your shoulders together. Pause for a second or two here to maintain good form.

    At no circumstances should you perform this exercise with the smith machine. You are already increasing risk of FURTHER injury to your back using the smith for squats. Pressing using the smith can also be disastrous for your shoulders.

    The smith machine limits your wave of motion reducing your natural muscle and joints movements. Using db's or bb's will allow the user to execute the chosen exercise to suit his/her needs. Considering the fact you already have an injury to your back I would advice to use the smith machine for nothing more than hanging up your sweater on.

    Ronan pointed out using hammer rows, also an excellent alternative worth trying out.

    Just forget the Smith machine.

  8. #7
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    And i might ask how can a smith machine cause more injury then a free weights! A smith machine has a fixed range of motion while with free weights you may side on a particular side ! please enlighten me elaborateburn cause what you are saying is unlogical!


    majsi98 aka big_R

  9. #8
    Administrator chris mason's Avatar
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    That would be illogical . Depending on what sort of barbell rows you are talking about, I think the dumbell row is superior to bent-over barbell rows. The reason for this is your lower back is being supported in the one-arm dumbell row. This allows for the trainee to focus to a much greater degree on the target muscles (lats, traps, etc.). When one is bent-over at a 90 degree (or thereabouts) angle and holding 200+ lbs, the lower back definitely becomes a limiting factor. I do, however, feel that t-bar rows are the best rowing movement available (for myself), as they still involve the lower back, but to a lesser degree than standard bent-over rows.

  10. #9
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    majsi98

    Oh my...

    I'm not starting any arguments here because I think there is too much unjustified flaming as it is. I will say, however, that telling someone to do rows on a smith machine (the said person also having lower back problems) is obviously a reflection of your knowledge. Not amounting to much. If you have access to db's then they can provide an excellent rowing tool. As Chris mentioned the lower back is taken out of play almost completely.

    The smith machine just does what you say, has a fixed range of motion. This in itself could cause added stress in both the shoulders, arms, wrists and back when performing rows. By restricting the trainee's natural line of motion

    The only thing illogical about this discussion is that you claim to have the desired knowledge to advice a trainee about the 'best' way to perform the exercise when clearly you read and believe everything you see in M & Fitness mag. Do you read flex aswell? Do yourself a favour and put the muscle mag's down and reach for that extra juicy steak instead.

    Could you please enlighten me as how a db would make one 'side on a particular side' as you put it.

  11. #10
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    I prefer barbell rows but dumbell rows are a great movement as well. If you have back problems neither one is good, but if your back is healed enough, you could probably perform the dumbell rows without any problems.

    Smith machine can cause more injury for the reason you just mentioned and elaborateburn just explained - fixed range of motion. Your body's natural movement is limited to the range of the machine.
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  12. #11
    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    Smith machine?

    WTF???

    Unlogical. *snicker*

    DB rows also allow for a greater ROM than BB rows.

  13. #12
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    ...

    Guys, I wasn't asking about using the Smith machine for rows. I was asking about using it for squats, hack squats, and deadlifts.

    The reason I want to use the Smith is because my lower back isn't strong enough to support the weight and I would easily lose balance. I know the Smith isn't as "safe" for normal people, but in my case it is much better (imo).

    So think if you had my problem what you would do, but please keep it in mind b/c it's not as easy to do stuff with free barbells as you may think. Thanks

  14. #13
    Geordie The_Chicken_Daddy's Avatar
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    So it's settled then - DB rows kick ass.
    "Geordie/'d3c:di/n. & adj. Brit colloq. n. 1 a native of Tyneside. 2 the dialect spoken on Tyneside. adj. of or relating to Tyneside, its people, or its dialect. [the name George + -IE]

  15. #14
    Senior Member Cackerot69's Avatar
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    Smith machine = Evil.

  16. #15
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    Re: ...

    Originally posted by jww13
    Guys, I wasn't asking about using the Smith machine for rows. I was asking about using it for squats, hack squats, and deadlifts.

    The reason I want to use the Smith is because my lower back isn't strong enough to support the weight and I would easily lose balance. I know the Smith isn't as "safe" for normal people, but in my case it is much better (imo).

    So think if you had my problem what you would do, but please keep it in mind b/c it's not as easy to do stuff with free barbells as you may think. Thanks
    Well that's even worse.

    Work on that lower back until you can do them free weight-- do a combination of lighter sets that you can handle, and specialized work to get your low back and abs able to handle it.

    You'll be a lot better off

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  17. #16
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    I have never really tried DB rows, only BB rows.

    However, since I have started doing deadlifts a few months ago, I have been unable to do BB rows because my lower back is too fukked!

    I have tried doing seated machine rows which I find gives me quite a good pump, and I certainly know I've worked the muscle the next day!

    Who knows, I may try DB rows next workout.

  18. #17
    Geordie The_Chicken_Daddy's Avatar
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    To reiterate a point: DB Rows kick ass.

    Especially when you can out lift the juicers of the gym [bar one - the kunt, but he is ace so i'll let him off...]
    "Geordie/'d3c:di/n. & adj. Brit colloq. n. 1 a native of Tyneside. 2 the dialect spoken on Tyneside. adj. of or relating to Tyneside, its people, or its dialect. [the name George + -IE]

  19. #18
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  20. #19
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    "Tadger, did you unload that last shot into your head?" - Chicken
    "Geordie/'d3c:di/n. & adj. Brit colloq. n. 1 a native of Tyneside. 2 the dialect spoken on Tyneside. adj. of or relating to Tyneside, its people, or its dialect. [the name George + -IE]

  21. #20
    Lord Kel Masters Sayiajin Prince's Avatar
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    do one arm db rows w/ the other arm on the bench for support, this takes away any lower back pain. its a safer alternative...hehe one time i almost flipped over cuz i wus doin BB rows heavier than me lol

    ps watch ur form


    personally i incorparate both db and BB alternating each week to stick in muscle confusion,

    use a wide grip on the BB rows and some times a narrow grip...
    my friends are simply shocked that back muscles are even capable of forming...hehe

    do DBs until u get ur lower back in gear.
    ditch that Smith crap u only waisting the time of the less educated newbie behind u... tuttut
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  22. #21
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    Some are really a pain in the ass sometimes,

    1. I never said doing rows on a smith machine was a great back movement, it is just an alternative, would you do sissy squats instead of the normal free weights squat.

    2. Me like you am an advisor of free weights, in fact i never used a smith machine, but that doesn't mean its bad or evil, I know a lot of natural body builders in my gym who developed extreme thick quads with the Smith, it s really stupid for a person who believes that with a smith one can't get benefit.

    3. Well i don't read Flex however i still mantain that M&F is a good mag to read. It has a lot of less bull**** then most others magazine, i prefer to read a M&F mag rather then ****ing at Penthouse magazine

    4. COuld you tell me please where i said that it is the best way?? What i said is that if you cant do them on a barbell try them on a smith, You better read carefully next time!

    5. Rather then attacking me personally you should go to an occulist to check your eyes cause i think you need a glasses, and also yes i do have knowledge about bodybuilding .

    6.You said :- Could you please enlighten me as how a db would make one 'side on a particular side' as you put it.
    Have you ever seen a guy doing rows with 2 dumbells?


    7. Actually right now i am eating a big juicy steak

    8. Read well next time



    tuttut

  23. #22
    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    Some are really a pain in the ass sometimes,

    ** True, that.

    1. I never said doing rows on a smith machine was a great back movement, it is just an alternative, would you do sissy squats instead of the normal free weights squat.

    ** Unlogical. No one quoted you as saying using a SM was the best way, we just suggested that it isn't a good alternative. Your sissy squat example doesn't make sence.

    2. Me like you am an advisor of free weights, in fact i never used a smith machine, but that doesn't mean its bad or evil, I know a lot of natural body builders in my gym who developed extreme thick quads with the Smith, it s really stupid for a person who believes that with a smith one can't get benefit.

    ** If those bodybuiders are using the Smith machine for squats, they are doing something that long term may lead to sever knee problems. Sometimes, using a
    Smith machine is fine. Most of the time, it isn't a good idea.

    3. Well i don't read Flex however i still mantain that M&F is a good mag to read. It has a lot of less bull**** then most others magazine, i prefer to read a M&F mag rather then ****ing at Penthouse magazine

    ** M&F is crap, just like the rest of them.

    4. COuld you tell me please where i said that it is the best way?? What i said is that if you cant do them on a barbell try them on a smith, You better read carefully next time!

    ** I didn't see anyone quote you as saying that was the best way.

    5. Rather then attacking me personally you should go to an occulist to check your eyes cause i think you need a glasses, and also yes i do have knowledge about bodybuilding .

    ** Sometimes poor grammar gets mocked. It isn't personal.

    6.You said :- Could you please enlighten me as how a db would make one 'side on a particular side' as you put it.
    Have you ever seen a guy doing rows with 2 dumbells?

    ** Yes. What is your point?


    7. Actually right now i am eating a big juicy steak

    ** Congratulations.

    8. Read well next time

    ** I try.

  24. #23
    Senior Member Craig James's Avatar
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    Smith Machine leads to injuries?

    Hey, Paul and the others who say that the Smith Machine can lead to injuries- please help me to understand why this would be the case.

    Wouldn't doing squats on the Smith Machine be very similar to using a hack squat machine? If they are similar, are you telling me that both of those exercises are bad for the knees? If bad for the knees, how so?

    How is doing overhead shoulder presses on the Smith Machine different in function from doing them on a regular military press machine? Again, if they are similar, are you all suggesting that those machines can lead to shoulder injuries, too?

    Or are you all saying that machines are Evile (so evil that it is pronounced e-vile )?

    Thanks

  25. #24
    Geordie The_Chicken_Daddy's Avatar
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    Craig: smith usage = weak stabilizers.

    Weak stabilizers = injury waiting to happen.

    They also lock the body into a fixed ROM, which can be dangerous - especially if it's not the bodies natural ROM.

    Machines are quasi-evile, but some can be very beneficial IMO.
    "Geordie/'d3c:di/n. & adj. Brit colloq. n. 1 a native of Tyneside. 2 the dialect spoken on Tyneside. adj. of or relating to Tyneside, its people, or its dialect. [the name George + -IE]

  26. #25
    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    Yep.

    With squats, it is the fixed ROM (and yes, i think hack squat machines can lead to the same types of probems) that, IMHO, is the issue.

    Weak stabilizers = injury in the real world

    As far as the shoulder press, I do not think that is as big a deal as the squat due to the mechanics of the movement (the joints are essentially under the same stress as a free weight press), but this is where the stabilizers become a bigger issue (if I had to pick one group of stabilizer muscles to have healthy, it would be the ones in the shoulder girdle).

    I think the SM is fine for calf raises and shrugs. I would use it for pressing only very occasionally.

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