machines vs weights(dumbells)

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jgordon85
3/5/08 1:17:30AM
i like workingout and exercising. i have been wondering this question ever since i could workout. what is better using machines or weights. i usually lift weights but i find that it gives me a lot of bulkyness. but using the machines does not give the same feeling nor does it seem to build muscle strength like lifting dumbells and weights. so what is better for you? how do they differ?
hotrodttt
3/5/08 1:30:39AM
Usually after lifting Dumbells I feel " Yakky " which translates to shredded But after using machines I feel weaker and my muscles hirt after so I reccomend using Dumbells.
skatenate
3/5/08 5:20:45AM
yeah, i was wondering the same question. im 16, and was wondering which would be better for mma/strength? i prefer to do weights just because i can do it at home, and yeah i feel like it does more for me, and i was wondering exactly what lifts to do?
CactusBob
3/5/08 8:57:52AM
Each have their advantages...

Dumbells are inexpensive and compact, and last forever. They ensure the use of stabilizing muscles as they are free, giving you some functional strength as well. Also, they provide just about any excercise imaginable, and feel better overall.

Machines are safe. Alone, you can be sure that you will not kill yourself by dropping anything on you. They provide the full range of motion while usually preventing over-motioning in any particular excercise. They generally limit risk of excercise-induced injury because of this.

Each have their disadvantages too

Dumbells have no guide whatsoever, so it is very easy to overextend or use improper technique for any excercise, increasing risk of injury. You can drop them, another hazard. I find it is more common to underextend an excercise with free weights, building short bulky muscle. This of course hurts athleticism and asthetic apeal.

Machines are cumbersome, expensive, and need repair and replacement. They do not provide an opportunity for stabilizing muscles to work, limiting the workout. There is also a wide array of machines on the market for any one excercise, so there will be many variations on any given excercise. This means you can potentially be using an ineffective or less effective technique.


I find freeweights to be the best for a workout, and the forarms in particular get a good workout. Since I work out at a gym with many other people present, freeweights are the best option. Also, mix it up a bit. For the large muscle groups like the chest, legs, use a combination to really focus on one area and also get an overall workout to that region. There is nothing wrong with machines as long as you research to get the best option, and really really focus on form.

None of this matters without knowledge of course, so definatly buy a book, surf the web, ask a forum, whatever you have to do before starting something knew. Hope this helps.
bigbubbano23
3/5/08 7:03:15PM
If your new at lifting and do not know the proper forms machine weights would be a better choice. But if you do have some experience free weights would give you better overall results. machine weights are generally used to target a specific muscle , while free weights can work an entire muscle group and more. for example when your on a machine your sitting on a padded seat and have limited motion. When using free weights your usually standing, balancing the weights and paying more attention to your workout.
casey64
3/5/08 8:10:11PM
Free weights is better no leverage just your muscles doing all the work
Daddyprimetime
3/6/08 1:20:49AM
Look at it this way. Resistance against your muscles is resistance. When you carry a heavy grocery bag you are putting resistance against your muscles. As long as you are doing correct workouts with free or machine weight you will see improvement, but machine weights will typically take longer and won't produce the same results as free weight. But as said before machine weights are alot safer than free weights. Your best bet is to use machines that allow you to use weights for each individual arm or leg. That way both arms or legs are lifting the same amount instead of your dominant arm or leg doing more work than the other.
Kracker_Jap
3/13/08 10:48:17AM
When I train people I always tell them that God created the dumbell first then he created the barbell

And ever since man has tried to make some machine be better than Dumbells and barbells with no success

Its all a matter of opinion but when your in the gym none of the tough guys are surrounding the pec dec to see how much they can fly
NeaRMisS
3/14/08 1:20:35AM
Free weights are about a billion times better. They do require a bit of respect more so then a machine. If you do any free weights try and find a partner with a bit more experiance then you to show the ropes. One major key is to make sure you learn to breath properly while working out. I've met way to many people that just dont fing breath while working out. I cant stress that enough. BREATH.

Also, a good website that might help is http://www.exrx.net/Exercise.html

Hope this helps, and good luck.
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