smith machine vs. barbell

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    smith machine vs. barbell


    If I am unable to find a training partner to spot me for bench press, would a smith machine bench be an effective alternative? I always do dumbbell bench press after barbell bench to work my stabilizer muscles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by popeye427 View Post
    If I am unable to find a training partner to spot me for bench press, would a smith machine bench be an effective alternative? I always do dumbbell bench press after barbell bench to work my stabilizer muscles.
    No. Bench inside a power rack. Granted you still won't have someone to help lift off, but you won't be in danger of getting stapled under the weight. Smith Machines are a travesty.
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    The increased stability on the smith press is going to change up the way your muscles are recruited to perform the motion. Smith machines aren't interchangeable with the bench press.

    Quote Originally Posted by rckvl7
    No. Bench inside a power rack. Granted you still won't have someone to help lift off, but you won't be in danger of getting stapled under the weight. Smith Machines are a travesty.
    Believe it or not, the smith machine was actually a prototype to the modern day leg press. I've never seen anyone use them for their originally intended purpose.
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    Quote Originally Posted by thesinner View Post
    The increased stability on the smith press is going to change up the way your muscles are recruited to perform the motion. Smith machines aren't interchangeable with the bench press.



    Believe it or not, the smith machine was actually a prototype to the modern day leg press. I've never seen anyone use them for their originally intended purpose.
    the only thing ever the smith machine kinda came in useful for me was too help me keep the tension in reverse grip completely on my triceps... other than that it sucks.
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    I don't think it sucks. Just overrated.

    I mainly dislike it when I see people doing squats on it, as it leads way to awfully botched form, increased egos, and accelerated joint degradation. But then I pause for a moment and remind myself, hey, at least they're making the attempt to work legs.
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    Despite what others may say, you don't have to take your sets to failure, so you shouldn't need a spotter for every single workout. My training partner mostly functions as a hand-off man and stays alert in case I injure myself in the middle of a set. I wouldn't train alone without a spotter, but if you are in a gym there should be someone else around so if something went wrong someone would be around to pull the bar off of you.
    Your best option is to bench in a power rack with the pins set just below chest level like someone else said.
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    Quote Originally Posted by thesinner View Post
    I don't think it sucks. Just overrated.

    I mainly dislike it when I see people doing squats on it, as it leads way to awfully botched form, increased egos, and accelerated joint degradation. But then I pause for a moment and remind myself, hey, at least they're making the attempt to work legs.
    Dorian Yates used it almost exclusively(for legs) to win the O. If it works use it I say. Personally I don't, but I like doing free ATG squats quite a bit. Most people are embarrassed to work legs and rightly so, its usually the worst body part haha.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blacktail View Post
    Dorian Yates used it almost exclusively(for legs) to win the O. If it works use it I say. Personally I don't, but I like doing free ATG squats quite a bit. Most people are embarrassed to work legs and rightly so, its usually the worst body part haha.

    Dorian Yates also knew how to squat

    Dexter Jackson does the same thing. In the case of bodybuilding (as finesse as it sometimes seems) the lacking lateral motion prevents stabilizing muscular development along the torso, leading to a smaller waist. Naturally, this makes the sweep, the lats, and the shoulders look bigger.

    The people I have in mind don't quite fit in this category. Instead they are novice, don't know how to squat, and use the smith machine for fear of getting caught underneath the bar. The problem of course is that they tend to develop really bad form. Also, the term ATG doesn't quite come into play with the particular stereotype I have in mind; if you don't know how to squat, chances are you haven't figured out the difference between parallel and a 90 degree bend in your knee, let alone the concept of going below parallel.
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    Quote Originally Posted by thesinner View Post
    Dorian Yates also knew how to squat

    Dexter Jackson does the same thing. In the case of bodybuilding (as finesse as it sometimes seems) the lacking lateral motion prevents stabilizing muscular development along the torso, leading to a smaller waist. Naturally, this makes the sweep, the lats, and the shoulders look bigger.

    The people I have in mind don't quite fit in this category. Instead they are novice, don't know how to squat, and use the smith machine for fear of getting caught underneath the bar. The problem of course is that they tend to develop really bad form. Also, the term ATG doesn't quite come into play with the particular stereotype I have in mind; if you don't know how to squat, chances are you haven't figured out the difference between parallel and a 90 degree bend in your knee, let alone the concept of going below parallel.
    Yea I agree with you, he did know how to squat first, then utilized that knowledge to focus on different parts of the leg muscle. He said his legs never grew till he did that. I know the people whom you speak of as well haha, 3/4 squats on the smith by rail thin legs...same thing on the leg press. Its like hey..your not fooling anyone here lol.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blacktail View Post
    Yea I agree with you, he did know how to squat first, then utilized that knowledge to focus on different parts of the leg muscle. He said his legs never grew till he did that. I know the people whom you speak of as well haha, 3/4 squats on the smith by rail thin legs...same thing on the leg press. Its like hey..your not fooling anyone here lol.
    The majority of bodybuilders these days seem to rely on machines to get the job done. I think the technology behind some of these newer machines, like hammer strength, have found a fairly happy medium between isolating the primary muscles and keeping the exercise a compound motion. It works wonders for building size, but I wouldn't quite recommend it for functional strength. Naturally, Dorian's testimony about how his legs never grew until he did that is a primary example.
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    Quote Originally Posted by thesinner View Post
    The majority of bodybuilders these days seem to rely on machines to get the job done. I think the technology behind some of these newer machines, like hammer strength, have found a fairly happy medium between isolating the primary muscles and keeping the exercise a compound motion. It works wonders for building size, but I wouldn't quite recommend it for functional strength. Naturally, Dorian's testimony about how his legs never grew until he did that is a primary example.
    Exactly the reason I utilize free weights. I need functional strength day to day.I do like using nautilus machines here and there though.
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    heavy smith squats by the tiny dudes... it never fails to amaze me that people will actually try to lift big weights they cant lift with bad form, all to "impress" other guys at the gym. is it really that humiliating to use a 25 lb plate or maybe just the bar to work on good form??? I think everyone here has seen someone either hurt themselves or come close just because they were trying to show everyone their nonexistant strength
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    Quote Originally Posted by popeye427 View Post
    If I am unable to find a training partner to spot me for bench press, would a smith machine bench be an effective alternative? I always do dumbbell bench press after barbell bench to work my stabilizer muscles.
    I disagree with most everyone who has posted in this thread regarding the use, or lack thereof, the smith machine for pressing. I use it from time to time. Line yourself up correctly, don't rush thru it and you'll find you can get an amazing contraction from the smith machine. I certainly wouldn't make it your staple movement, but for days your w.o. partner misses or you can't or don't feel like finding a spot, the smith machine is always an option. Smith machine close-grip presses are amazing for me. Find what works for you and run with it.
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