Machines Versus Free Weights
What's right for you?
- They are great for beginners because they are safe and easy to use.
- Machines guide your body through a certain range of motion.
- You don't have to worry about balancing the weight as much as with free weights.
- Machines don't require as much coordination.
- Machines isolate each muscle group.
- Machines let you get in a fast workout. You go through a circuit of machines and then you are finished.
- Machines are usually arranged so that you work large muscle groups and then smaller muscle groups.
- Machines don't fit everybody. They can be hard to adjust.
- Machines don't build as much balance or coordination.
- Machines can put your body into a bad range of motion. (If you feel uncomfortable move onto another machine)
- Machines are not portable. They can't be moved around very easily.
- Many trainers (including me) believe that working out with machines alone doesn't build a very good (lean, strong, flexible) body.
- Free weights are versatile. One set of dumbells can be used for many exercises.
- Free weights build better balance and coordination.
- Free weights work your muscles in a way that matches real life.
- Many trainers primarily use free weights to gain strength while maintaining flexibility and agility.
- Free weights allow you to strengthen muscles and tendons that wouldn't get much work when using machines.
- Free weights are easier and cheaper to do at home.
- Free weights can be difficult to learn because of the balance and coordination required.
- A free weight workout can take longer than a machine workout.
- You can get injured easier using free weights.