Can we use Smith Machine For Chest/Shoulder press?

Question:  For Chest/Shoulder press can we use Smith Machine, instead of the regular chest press machine?


 

 Answer:I am a certified Bodybuilding coach. Please consider this. The difference between various machines and free weights is the manner in which the resistance is applied. The problem with machines is With the placement of the USER IN A FIXED POSITION the machines move in a fixed direction of motion or range of motion. Let the user be thin, Fat, Tall or short the user should adjust his movement to suit the movement of the machine. There is no freedom of movement to the user. The Smith machine allows you to directly work the muscle with no stabilization issues. The Smith machine, when abused, can cause overuse patterns because of the total elimination of freedom of movement, as it has a fixed-pattern movement set by the machine and, of course, your stabilized muscles will be completely robbed of any work.

Rather, when you use free weights like dumbells or barbells loaded with weights, you have freedom of movement. You may have more strength in one hand than the other and obviously you will start building strength in lagging body parts. Yu will also improve the balance aspect and engage your core better on free weights.
Does that mean you will have to not use Smith machine or chest press machine ?
No, it does not. The machine can be a great “finisher” movement or great as part of a multi-movement set, but it should not be the first choice for developing your strength.
Your order of preference should be FREE WEIGHTS > Machines . especially For a well rounded chest EMG studies indicate DUMBELLS> Barbells > Machines for peak activation of the muscle fibers . so please pick in this order.

 

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