In our last blog post, we discussed the pros and cons of using free weights in your daily workout routine. If you haven’t read it yet you can find it here. In case you’re short on time and just want a recap, we talked about how free weights are excellent for building overall muscle mass and strength because they work out stabilizer muscles that machines don’t. However, working with free weights can be dangerous if you don’t have perfect form, so you will need to weigh the pros and cons and decide what is best for you.

Today we’re going to look at machines and what the pros and cons of using them in your workout routine are.

Weight Machines: Pros

Weight machines are fantastic for beginners. They’re safe, quick to learn, and pretty easy to use. If you’re just starting out for the first time with a workout program, using machines is a great way to get your bearings in the gym and build your confidence. While free weights are the way to go to get a full body workout, machines are incredible for isolating individual muscles. If there’s a specific muscle you want to work on, for example your biceps, you can find the right machine and work away on them.

Another added benefit of using machines is that you generally won’t need a spotter to lift high amounts of weight. Because most machines use a pulley system and are self-contained, you won’t be dropping weight on yourself or others if you work to failure.

Weight Machines: Cons

We’ve sort of hit this con already but the fact that weight machines are typically restricted to one plane of motion keep you from working out your stabilizer muscles. That means when you use a machine you’re not getting the most return on your time investment. Another con, although less of a big deal, is that machines are popular at the gym, so you may be forced to wait your turn if you want to use them.

When it comes to your daily workout routine, both free weights and machines can be beneficial. A great way to take advantage of both the pros of free weights and machines is to start your workout using free weights and then, once you’ve gotten your full body workout in, switch over to a machine to focus each muscle group. This will allow you to hit your stabilizer muscles as well as your main muscle groups for an overall great workout!

If you’d like to get in touch with us about getting top-of-the-line free weights and machines, or you’re interested in nailing down proper form with some personal training, don’t hesitate to give us a call or stop in at one of our locations. We’d love to talk! Our number is (650) 348-1259 for San Mateo or (408) 244-3010 for Santa Clara, or you can reach us online here!