Training with weight machines and free weights both have their pros and cons when it comes to weight training programmes. The choice you make about training with weight machines or free weights shouldn’t be based on how full or empty each section of the gym is! In this article, you’ll discover some of the benefits of training with weight machines as opposed to free weights.
Weight machines vs Free weights
Machines are great for the beginner weight trainer
If you are new to weight training programmes, working out with weight machines could be just the thing for you because you’re guided – by the machine – in how to do the exercise. This makes sure that your form is correct and ensures that you avoid any pesky injuries. When you start, Shannon Clark advises: “Your objective at this point is to get the muscles used to the stress of the weight lifting stimulus and prepare yourself for more advanced programs.”
You’re able to target certain muscle groups easily
Each machine is designed in order to work one muscle group only. For example, the pull-down machine is specifically designed to work your lats. Thus, you’ll be able to get a targeted workout for the specific muscles you want.
Your workouts will be faster
As weight machines target specific muscle groups, you’ll be able to get a concentrated workout for the specific muscles you want to train – in less time than it would have taken using free weights.
You don’t need to train with a spotter
The thing about free weights is that if you need to get a very heavy weight down, in a hurry, you’ll need a spotter to help you. With weight machines, you’ll be able to lower even the heaviest of weights by yourself as you’ll have the machine’s assistance.
Train with weight machines when you’re injured
If you’re recovering from an injury, you don’t need to ditch your weight-training regime altogether! As weight machines are targeted to work certain muscles groups, you can easily avoid training an injured muscle and train other muscles with weight machines. So good news: even an injury won’t put a spanner in the works for your weight training routine – although work with lighter weights and perform higher reps, says Jamin Thompson.
If you work out with either free weights or weight machines, always remember to keep your fitness goals in mind. For example, if your goal is to build strength choose heavier weights and perform less reps.
Do you find that you spend more time in the weights section – machine or free weights – than anywhere else? Is fitness your passion and do you want to make a career out of it – and help others achieve their fitness goals? Check out Trifocus Fitness Academy’s Personal Training Certification – it’s the best grounding in fitness that you’ll ever get!