To Machine Or Not To Machine?
Machines vs. Free Weights
There’s an ongoing debate about whether you should use machines or free weights for your workouts. It really all depends on the type of workout you’re looking to do, and the goals that you are looking to achieve.
The biggest difference is your core activation, and the stability placed on your joints/muscles.
When you’re using machines, you’re generally supported. When you become supported, it’s a lot harder to activate and engage your core for your workouts. However, you will be able to specifically train the muscle group you are looking to focus on. So if you’re looking to just train the one specific muscle/muscle group, the machines may be the best way to go. This form of training is used a lot when you’re doing a form of injury rehab.
When you go into free weights (barbells, dumbbells, cables, TRX, etc) you’re getting much more core activation during your workouts. You may have heard the term “functional training” thrown around a lot these days. Exercises where you don’t use machines are generally more adaptable to your everyday life. When in your day do you sit down in a chair and push anything in-front of you? But if you work your chest while leaning with the cables, you’ll get the benefit of a chest workout, as well as a core workout. Win- win, and you can cut down on your time in the gym (if you’d like).
But you can incorporate the right balance of machines and free weights. There is no 100% correct way to train. The best way to train is to find a trainer that will learn everything about your body, then create a strong program around your bodies needs.
It’s all about finding balance. Contact an Iron Fit Trainer to find the balance you need to reach your goals.