The smith machine is one of the pieces of gym equipment which is very misunderstood. Smith machines can be dangerous when it comes to an unnatural press and squatting position, however, with a tweak here and there it can become a very good piece of gym equipment to use within your workouts. The disadvantages of the smith machine definitely outweigh the positives.
The reason as to why the smith machine is hated is that many experts argue that it is not natural to exercise the body on a fixed plane, also the favouring of one side of the body can easily be done, which is not very beneficial when it comes to building symmetry with your body’s muscles. A prime example of a smith machine using a fixed plane of motion would be when performing a squat. When you perform a squat, it is more natural for you to use a variety of joints in the body including the ankle and hip joints. When performing a squat on a smith machine the only joint you really use is the knee.
It is much more beneficial to use free weight, as this can give you a very accurate idea as to how much weight you can actually lift. For example I can bench press 70KG on the free weight bench press and on a smith machine I can easy bench 100KG. as I mentioned earlier if you do begin to struggle when performing an exercise on the smith machine you automatically begin to favour your stronger side, which is no good for your gym progress.
Try free weight exercises on light weights to begin with until you become use to the movement and can properly perform each repetition. It is also good to ask somebody to spot you when performing free weight exercise.
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