Free Weights vs. Machines
For those of you that have plenty of space in your basement, you have a few things to consider when purchasing gym equipment for your home. If you are looking to build muscle fast and effectively, then I would recommend saving the money you would spend on an elaborate home gym and instead, buy an adjustable flat bench and a set of free weights. The main appeal to home gyms is the small foot print many of them have. But if space isn’t an issue, get the staple apparatuses you need to build muscle.
Ask any bodybuilder and they’ll tell you. Using free weights is the best way to build quality muscle. With free weights, you muscles are forced to not only balance, but control the weight throughout the entire range of motion. What machines offer is stability, which takes the balancing act out of the workout, making it less beneficial to muscle growth. Your muscles need to be challenged if you want them to grow. Most professional lifters lift with free weights only because they don’t want to do their muscles a disservice. But by no mean are all of us bodybuilders. Don’t get me wrong, machines aren’t completely useless. If you are relatively new to lifting weights, I’d recommend using machines to familiarize yourself with the range of motion all of your exercises before practicing with free weights. Once you feel you are comfortable to get press some hard iron, leave the machines behind.
On the other hand, if you are less concerning with building large muscles and nice compact gym set is all you need to reach your fitness goals; a machine is right up your alley. Most home gyms differ from the machines you see in the gym because the generally use cables. This produces more a resistance weight training workout which is better than a machine but still not as good as free weights. If you’re insistent on buying one, just make sure you get the right one. Check out the pros and cons of some of the best home gyms on the market here.