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Thread: Are free weights better than machines? page 3

  1. #21
    DanC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RSL View Post
    Is using a bicep machine really that much easier than just doing bicep curls with a free weight?
    Its not just about easier. If you stand and do alternating curls you will tighten your abs and glutes, you will also maintain balance which requires I dont know how many muscles to work. If you sit in a machine you work your biceps and that is about all. IMHO

  2. #22
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    I don't know if this analogy is valid but...

    Dips on a dip station < dips on rings.

    I can do about 20-30 dips on a dip station (where the machine doesn't move) but I can only muster about 4 dips on rings, where my stabilizing muscles are all out of wack and working hard just to keep me upright. Technically, I'm still lifting the same weight (my body) and doing a similar movement (the dip), but the muscles involved seem to be heavily under-developed when it comes to rings than when it comes to the dip station/parallel bars/etc.

    That's kind of how machines and free weights seem to me.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vick View Post
    I can't remember putting something on the back of neck to try and lift it. Why would I do a squat?
    To carry a carcass to camp? Or in these modern days - saving someone that is hurt by carrying them in a fireman's lift? Doesn't happen often I am sure, but it is nice to be able to do it if needed.
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  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sungrazer View Post
    To carry a carcass to camp? Or in these modern days - saving someone that is hurt by carrying them in a fireman's lift? Doesn't happen often I am sure, but it is nice to be able to do it if needed.
    Fireman's lift... I'll buy into that.

    Is there a better exercise to simulate a fireman's lift?

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vick View Post
    Fireman's lift... I'll buy into that.

    Is there a better exercise to simulate a fireman's lift?
    Heaving sandbags onto your shoulders.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coach Palfrey View Post
    A machine is, by definition, designed to make a load easier to shift - this means that your body adapts to the particulars of that system (be it leverage or pulley or whatever). If you are training to improve performance in that given modality then it could be argued that it remains functional to carry out machine based resistance work. But this is rarely the case. We should be training to move better/increase performance, and this generally aligns itself to working with a freely moving external load.

    Put simply - free weights produce real world results.
    I agree with everything but your last sentence. Free weights produce people who are good at lifting free weights.

    To improve my skills at keeping up with football players as an official I need to run. I need to do that so my nervous system and VO2 max is more efficient at running not doing a calf raise. That will produce a real world result.

    Anti-sarcopenic exercises need to be designed to build muscle mass.

    Coach I think building muscle mass and improving performance are two totally different concepts and need to be considered separately as part of an overall fitness or training program.

  7. #27
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    ..but Vick that is like asking "what is better Bacon or Eggs?"

    Each kicks ass in their own special way.

    Also, for some people who can't squat the leg press machine is better.

    Machines and free weights have their place and can compliment each other well. But then most machines are used outside of their application by people who really need to hire a trainer or at least pay attention.

  8. #28
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    "Coach I think building muscle mass and improving performance are two totally different concepts and need to be considered separately as part of an overall fitness or training program."

    Exactly.

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vick View Post
    I agree with everything but your last sentence. Free weights produce people who are good at lifting free weights.
    So you never lift anything? You might not regularly need to lift anything heavy, but most other people don't need to regularly run, so your argument comes right back to you

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vick View Post
    I agree with everything but your last sentence. Free weights produce people who are good at lifting free weights.
    . . . What is not free weight? Whether it's a barbell or a sack of dog food, neither are fixed to a pulley system. Your body needs to be able to stablize the load, and machines do not enforce that. For me, free weights are ideal because they are functional, they translate well over to other aspects in my life. (and from a sports aspect, I'm a lifter in rugby; being able to squat and recover from a large load is essential for completing a lift).

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