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Thread: Smith Machine

  1. #1
    Wannabebig New Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005

    Smith Machine

    Hey guys

    I've been training pretty seriously since the beginning of the summer, with reasonable results for a beginner I think.

    My problem is throughout the summer I always worked out with a spotter. However, since I went back to school I've had to workout by myself. This is alright for most exerciseís but Iíve been afraid to use the bench for incline/decline and regular bench press incase I am unable to lift the weight back up. The gym I work out now doesn't have the benches with the safety on them either.

    So Iíve had to rely on the Smith Machine. But for some reason, I never felt like Iíve been able to work the muscles as much, and my progress has defiantly slowed on my chest.

    I guess my question is if anyone else has had this problem, and if so, what can be done about it? My workout is suffering because of it.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Canadian Crippler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    The Pavilion
    Use dumbells...
    "I added some db curls with the pink weights for a bit of a burn." - Rookiebldr

    "im assuming the holy (big) 3 are: curls, bench, legs?" - Saggas

    "had a huge ass burn on my triceps while I was doing those kickbacks, so they'll likely be staying with my exercise program." - Zearoth

    "most of my burned calories coming from something called Basal. Wtf does a leaf have to do with any of it?" - Votorx

    "We have a lot of people like that on our campus, all hippies and things, that go around preaching against corporations, jocks, preps, accountants, and anyone else that feels the need to shower more than occasionally." - Shankerr

    "Damn man why are some women just so demonic and evil.. its like you wanna get a stake and mallet and an erection at the same time." - WBBIRL

  3. #3
    Senior Member malkore's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    agreed, use dumbbells. smith machines don't have the same slightly arc'd ROM as a freeweight barbell, plus poorly maintained machines have added friction, which reduces poundage, yada yada.

    dumbbells require even more use of stabilizer muscles than barbells, so expect to drop poundage a little at first, but then expect to start making good gains since you're not used to the different stresses of DB pressing.

  4. #4
    Senior Member DNL's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    bench in a cage.

    DB is a viable option

    or you can work with weight that you can handle for 8 and dont' try to go too heavy that you know you'd fail at 3. This will take a while to practice. Check your ego at the door. or you can ask for a spot from some random guy.

    good luck.

  5. #5
    Grammar Nazi BG5150's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Quote Originally Posted by DNL
    or you can ask for a spot from some random guy.
    I wouldn't do that. But if you go tot he gym around the same time each day, you're bound to see who kinda knows what they are doing and who doesn't.

    Just the other day, someone in my gym asked some "random" guy for a spot. The lifter was benching almost 200. The spotter, when he was helping on the last rep, used one arm and yanked the bar up. And God forbid the lifter truly failed--that guy couldn't haul up 200# with one arm and get it safely to the catches.

    Be careful whom you ask to spot you...
    There are no stupid questions, just stupid people.
    Two wrongs don't make a right, but three rights make a left.
    Are you eating while you are reading this? You should be... --hrdgain81
    Remember, kids, if you write properly, the Grammar Fairy will leave a quarter under your pillow. The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation

  6. #6
    Wannabebig Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Quote Originally Posted by DNL
    bench in a cage.
    Just to expand on this as it's not always that obvious, or at least it wasn't to me. You drag a free bench into the cage, set up the safety rails to where the bar would fall onto such that it won't hit you if you fail and drop the bar, then start stacking on weights. So yes, cages can be used for benching too.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Toronto, ON
    Getting a spot is simple if you're even remotely experienced. If you know how much weight you can handle, all you need is very slight assistance on the last rep. I've had girls who weigh 110lbs spot me while I was benching close to 300lbs, it's not a big deal as long as you know your own limits

    And if you really know your own limits, you can bench without a spotter at all. I do probably 75% of my benching without a spotter, and I never get stuck. I can tell when I've got 1 rep left


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