Hey guys, i just bought a new bench with a smith machine, do theses actualy help you lift, my brother swares it does, by stabalizing it for you, anyone got the scoop on what it's better or worst for? Thanks -Ron
what are you goals?
my exprience - joined gym 10 years ago, 6 1/2 years hard weight training exprience.
It doesnt use as much stabilizers as normal squat...obviously. But It works. A lot less strain on the back too from what ive heard.
Cons- Limited ROM, limited use of stabilizers
Pros- Can do some lifts without a spotter
I stay away from them. Squats, deads, bench, military etc are all so much more fun with free weights.
I would rather do less weight and do them on free weight than use smith ive tained with people that can bench 220+ on smith but cnt do 150 on free weights
weight 202 - (bf around 14%)
Bench - 286
deadlift - new pr on the 23/12/06 190 kilo (430 pound)
squat - 264 ATF
200 pound at 10% bf by next summer
Since everything is set in 1 motion for you, you over use the same ligaments and tendons over and over setting yourself up for an injury. Or at least thats what I have heard.
Anytime you train chest you use the tendons that attach your pec major and minor. Each muscle is attached by specific tendon(s) so there is no options there.
As for ligaments. They are fairly joint specific. If you use your knee you use the ligaments that hold the knee together.
I had a personal trainer tell me I was missing ligaments and tendons by not switching my routine. Naturally I made her eat her words.
Then she told me I was missing supportive muscles. I asked her to name one, she couldn't.
The Smith machine locks you into a fixed plane of motion, which develops a term coined by Paul Chek: "Pattern overload syndrome":
People get a pattern overload from using the Smith machine. The more fixed the object, the more likely you are to develop a pattern overload. This is due to the fact that training in a fixed pathway repetitively loads the same muscles, tendons, ligaments and joints in the same pattern, encouraging micro-trauma that eventually leads to injury. If Johnny Lunchpail always uses a Smith machine for his bench presses, he ends up working the same fibers of the prime movers in the bench press all of the time: triceps brachii, pectoralis major, long-head of the biceps, anterior deltoids, and serratus anterior. But he can't change the pathway, the bar will always be in the same position. This commonly leads to chronic injury over time. The weight is stabilized for you. However, the joints operate in multiple planes. Use of the Smith machine, greatly decreases stabilizer activity. That creates a problem when the trainee returns to free-weight training. When that happens, the trainee is exposed to the three-dimensional environment called real life.
The key word is "repetitive." The duration the smith machine is used for is a factor as well.
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95% of the time free weights are better.......and kinder to joints and ligaments.
What if you use the smith and regular, like switch off every work out would that be okay?
Originally Posted by Ron Burgundy
it's always a good idea to take the best of both worlds, freeweights and machines. You should not exlude one or the other.
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I concur. Diet is your bestfriend. Freeweight is your wife. And machine is your mistress =).Originally Posted by RussianRocket
I free squat, and I don't use a spotter.
That's what the safety pins are for.
It's just a form of resistance. For hypertrophy work, especially for the upper body, I don't see a problem. It's nothing but a means of overload.
I'd be more cautious using it for lower body work, esp. squats due to mechanical issues, but the same idea applies.
It sucks for specific strength development, ie getting stronger specifically for bench press, squat, etc, but is fine for progressive overload as a means of hypertrophy.
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when im doing a mass routine i use alot of machines+smith but when im training for pure strength via westsiiide free weights are like 90-95% of the game.
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height: 5'8'' (im lieing its probably 5'7'')
weight: 159-165 lbs (morning and day)
goals for end of the year 405/500/600 at 170-175(with the 8pack)
other: dips 3 and a quarter plates for 4 reps
Cons: Locks you into a single plane of motion making it difficult to recruit auxiliary muscles to help your lift. Like any machine, it is not a "natural" movement and should be used sparingly.
Pros: It's a really nice place to hang your belt or sweats.