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Drew Armstrong
11-15-2008, 04:11 PM
My boss just informed me a couple of days ago that squats with barbells are prohibited in our gym now. He said our members and our staff needs to use the smith machine for all squats. I hate the smith machine. Does anyone know if the smith machine is bad for your alignment? or anything else?

Jamie J. Skibicki
11-15-2008, 04:23 PM
THe machine forces your body where it wants you to go, as opposed to the barbell squat, where your body moves naturally.

I 'm not sure what I would do if a gym employee told me I couldn't squat. I'll get back to you on this.

Tyler Smith
11-15-2008, 07:54 PM
My boss just informed me a couple of days ago that squats with barbells are prohibited in our gym now. He said our members and our staff needs to use the smith machine for all squats. I hate the smith machine. Does anyone know if the smith machine is bad for your alignment? or anything else?

Did you ask your boss why you weren't allowed to squat? This seems a little odd to me... I would assume you would have squat racks in your gym, right? If so, ask him what they are for?

Charles Bennington
11-15-2008, 08:02 PM
My boss just informed me a couple of days ago that squats with barbells are prohibited in our gym now. He said our members and our staff needs to use the smith machine for all squats. I hate the smith machine. Does anyone know if the smith machine is bad for your alignment? or anything else?

Is there any reasoning or justification for this craziness?

Anthony Bainbridge
11-15-2008, 08:03 PM
Time for a new boss.

Jamie J. Skibicki
11-15-2008, 10:48 PM
I would laugh then berate someone who told me I couldn't squat. THen possbly a dry rub and a slow cooker.

Gus Gallagher
11-15-2008, 10:57 PM
nah you wouldn't want to eat someone that doesn't squat - no meat on them!

Tyler Smith
11-16-2008, 12:35 AM
nah you wouldn't want to eat someone that doesn't squat - no meat on them!


Good point... and yes... time for a new boss.

Jamie J. Skibicki
11-16-2008, 12:54 AM
THats the point, they would be so tender, like veal.

James Withington
11-16-2008, 05:18 AM
Did you ask your boss why you weren't allowed to squat? This seems a little odd to me... I would assume you would have squat racks in your gym, right? If so, ask him what they are for?

Bicep curls. Obviously. :weight_l:

Tyler Smith
11-16-2008, 10:17 AM
Bicep curls. Obviously. :weight_l:
well yeah... those and super heavy SHRUGS!!! AAAARRRRGGGG!!!!!!... on and the behind the back ones too.

Pete Nadeau
11-16-2008, 10:56 AM
Barbell squats not allowed at a gym ?? sounds like a health club or spa

Ted Apollo
11-16-2008, 11:21 AM
Bicep curls. Obviously. :weight_l:

that is what the squat rack at my globo is used for. its always nice when someone is supersetting curls with leg presses, calve raises, and hammer machine rows. its frustrating for me because the rack is the only reason i go to the globo.

i bet your boss read an article in a magazine like m&f about how bad squats are on the knees while on the next page is a big advertisement for a smith machine?

Drew Armstrong
11-16-2008, 11:32 AM
We are open 24 hours and he doesnt want anyone anyone getting hurt while we are not there and sueing. So he put a sign up that says "squats are to be limited to the smith machine, this is a functional training cage only." I asked him if I could still do them and he said NO, live by your rules... I felt like telling him they are not MY rules. But he pays my bills.

Don Reynolds
11-16-2008, 11:59 AM
We are open 24 hours and he doesnt want anyone anyone getting hurt while we are not there and sueing. So he put a sign up that says "squats are to be limited to the smith machine, this is a functional training cage only." I asked him if I could still do them and he said NO, live by your rules... I felt like telling him they are not MY rules. But he pays my bills.

The fear is a legit concern, but seems faulty when only limiting it to a squat rack. Anyone can, and often do, get hurt on just about any piece of gym equipment out there. It's not like you'll have an employee watching each member to ensure they are doing it correctly even at the best of times; and that's assuming those employees know what good form is to begin with.

Isn't there some kind of waiver you could have people sign to avoid any reasonable lawsuits based on stupidity of members/

John C. Brown
11-16-2008, 12:18 PM
The Smith machine is dangerous for squatting...

The machine traps the hip in an unnatural position, heavily loads the quads (it forces the weight onto the toes). If you have ever seen someone doing overhead squats and they move their butt down first instead of back first? The Smith Machine forces this movement and keeps it there, which limits the depth of the squat as well.

Does your boss allow one rep max lateral raises? Or has he stated that they are not allowed to be attempted? Because those are infinitely more likely to cause injury then a full depth squat. Does he make you do air squats in the Smith? Because that would be priceless...

Justin McGinley
11-17-2008, 12:25 PM
Take the time to put together evidence that squatting in a smith machine is more dangerous and more likely to cause injury than squatting in a rack. Present this to him, and tell him that ethically, you cannot encourage people to squat with the smith machine. (get your resume ready)

Robert Peck Fletcher
11-17-2008, 03:37 PM
When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. Use what you have available. Smith machines, pushmowers and handguns injure people when they are not used properly. Just do not be "that guy" who tries a Smith machine squat one rep max with 605lbs, cut a big toe off or has a video posted on the internet when he shoots himself in the foot as he is taliking to a group of school kids about gun safety. Good luck on the training!

John Biddle
11-17-2008, 10:38 PM
I know this doesn't help you, but what do you think he means by saying "this is a functional training cage only"?

William Stanton
11-18-2008, 09:17 AM
Hey man, I'm sorry to hear about this goofy development. If I were you, I would be careful about telling your boss that he's wrong. Remember, he's your boss, and he probably thinks that he knows a lot about strength training. So make sure, if you do anything at all, that you present the information in a very careful way. You can NOT say "you are wrong," thus implying that he's stupid. This will probably make him defensive. Maybe you could ask him to explain why Smith squats are safer, and you could say, "That's very interesting. Well I've heard somewhere that Smith squats can be pretty dangerous, too, for these reasons...I guess some people think that barbell squats can be fine for your knees. I know you know a lot about this stuff. What do YOU think?"

Then pursue it gently for a couple of days. Maybe send him an article about the dangers of Smith squatting and the benefits of barbell squatting, just to "ask him what he thinks." Remember, he's probably older than you, and he probably DOES know a lot about strength training. So NEVER let him think you're calling him stupid or ignorant. This would be rude, and it could be the end of your job there (and no one would ever squat in that gym again).

Tom Fetter
11-18-2008, 09:40 AM
You're a trainer there - and can neither do or have your clients do squats?

Time to consider opening a garage affiliate, IMO.

Sara Fleming
11-18-2008, 12:36 PM
This does suck, it may be one of those "out-of-his-hands-blood-sucking-insurance-agency" theories. But, I would try and take the educated discussion approach. Make sure you have some good sources from nationally accredited agencies. In terms of you having your own clients squat, surely, if you have liability insurance and you are supervising the client, it shouldn't matter. It sounds very unreasonable and strange. There has to be something else going on there, maybe a pending lawsuit?

BTW, I just trained my dad (he's 65 and mostly uses machines) at my gym today and taught him how to use the Smith machine correctly:

1. adjust the bar to chest height to use for bodyweight rows.

2. adjust the bar to belly button height to use for weight assisted pushups and dips.

3. At belly button height, use as stabilization for hands during high rep air squats to maintain full range of motion.

:D

This was after I taught him how to do box squats, dead lifts, and push press in the squat rack of course. :)

Dustin Berry
11-18-2008, 12:46 PM
I know this doesn't help you, but what do you think he means by saying "this is a functional training cage only"?

That's kind of what I was thinking. Some people do think that curls are more functional than squats, they may be right. Or they could just be dumb...

Robert Callahan
11-18-2008, 03:06 PM
"squats are to be limited to the smith machine, this is a functional training cage only."

Squats are no longer allowed in his "functional training cage"? There are so many things wrong with this that I cannot even begin to articulate them....

Chris Walls
11-18-2008, 03:14 PM
Squats aren't functional... when will I ever have to stand up with a weight on my shoulders?



:D

Justin Shipley
11-18-2008, 03:26 PM
Read Mark Rippetoe's article entitled Going Deep from the Crossfit Journal... or for that matter, ANY of the articles in the powerlifting category of the journal regarding squatting; print them out; learn how to squat beatifully yourself; learn the appropriate cues and pointers necessary for training OTHERS to squat correctly, and then, armed with this information and technique and coaching ability, present the facts to the boss, along with an offer that YOU are the man to be instructing these accident-prone gym members in safe squat form...

If still no go, apply Anthony Bainbridge's recommendation from a few posts ago:)

Lorenzo Inglese
11-20-2008, 07:16 PM
The best way to use a smith machine is to melt it and use the steel to make more barbells. End of story.

Smith Machine = Fail

Justin Z. Smith
11-20-2008, 08:31 PM
I practice Smith machine and freeweight and various machine squats, all of them to get a different 'feel', basically squatting under different conditions.

I realized the Smith machine wasn't so bad for my general goals once I realized in general that many times in real life we do have to move stuff that can only move along on a fixed track, things that are attached to their environment by more than just gravity.

For example to name a few, things like front doors, cabinet doors, closet doors, non-electrical garage doors, dresser drawers, windows, table leaves, a merry-go-round, track lights, shower curtains, removing bowling balls from the return, extendable ladders, and using other strength training machines.
(and human powered roller coasters! http://www.treehugger.com/files/2007/03/treehuggerstyle.php safe for work, family, etc.)


Justin

Jamie J. Skibicki
11-20-2008, 09:54 PM
Justin,

I would like to believe you are being sarcastic. Please tell me I'm right.

Justin Z. Smith
11-20-2008, 10:55 PM
FYI the Jones machine is a nice update on the Smith machine:
http://www.beyondmoseying.com/bodycraft-jones-machine.html
(safe for work, family, etc.)


Justin

Jared Grisham
11-20-2008, 11:27 PM
FYI the Jones machine is a nice update on the Smith machine:
http://www.beyondmoseying.com/bodycraft-jones-machine.html
(safe for work, family, etc.)


Justin

If the point of that machine is to mimic a free weight squat, why not just do a free weight squat?

Redundant machines are redundant.

Shawn Casey
11-21-2008, 02:37 AM
Where is mr. Woods? I think Justin needs a sturn talking to about the rules. Rule #1: you do not praise the smith machine. Rule #2: you do not praise the smith machine!

I don't think the smith machine is barbell worthy, the metal's already tainted. I would put it in the garden and wrap vines around it. Maybe a pigeon crapper would be a better use? Put it in the monkey cage at the zoo. Lower the bar, put it in the house next to the table and use it for seating the wife's family members for the holidays. Give it to the same family members for there Christmas present.......ok, I'm done.

Drew: I think you should take a picture of the sign and use it as your avatar. Is your boss cool or is he an *******? I'd probably search for another job anyways after that or, you could hire someone to fill the smith machine until it boiling over with poundage and then push it over. It will have to be at about 0200, of course, when no one's there. when he sees the rack on the floor stacked with weights, hopefully he'll ban the smith machine. Do this with every machine until nothing is left but the power rack and barbells. Give him a rogue and a garage gym catalog. Point out all the equipment that doesn't fall over( talk him into all of it). I don't think you'll have any problems after that.

Seriously, just look for another job........and really, don't do what I said up there:redx:

Shawn Casey
11-21-2008, 02:40 AM
Another thing, I bet 10 bucks dumping a barbell in the hole is alot easier than doing whatever with a smith machine in the hole.

Jared Grisham
11-21-2008, 02:28 PM
Another thing, I bet 10 bucks dumping a barbell in the hole is alot easier than doing whatever with a smith machine in the hole.

Not to mention a good skill to learn.

Justin Z. Smith
11-21-2008, 03:42 PM
If the point of that machine is to mimic a free weight squat, why not just do a free weight squat?


Well I aleady covered my reason why I'd include this as well as doing other machine squats and freeweight squat.

To add on more reasons, since you asked, some people find the built-in spotter feature useful, same with being able to stop at any part of the lift, using it for more exercises than just squats, including doing things like throwing the barbell, easy transitions between exercises, and that it feels slightly different than the exercises with freeweights because of the tracking so it might be a good idea to practice.


Justin

Tom Woodward
11-21-2008, 05:26 PM
Smith machines always make me think of Forrest Gump breaking out of his leg braces.

Shawn Casey
11-22-2008, 08:49 AM
Hey Justin,

Your statisticool site is pretty cool but alot of your exercises statistisuck.


ADDUCTOR?! FLYE?

Your an M&F guy and that's ok. There's just not enough room in my backyard for a smith machine and I got plenty of other things to throw like sandbags, kettlebells, medicineballs, dumbells, rocks, 3yr old. It's not that I hate the Smith machine itself, I hate the guy that's making money selling the Smith machine and all other machines for that matter because they're contributing the laziness of the western world. "Don't worry, you don't have to use a barbell, and when your done sitting on this nice comfy pad, paddling this bike in the recliner position while watching TV, you can come over here and do some 2 in squats in this machine that goes up and down in a straight line for you and locks so you don't need to rack it and here's some 5pounders to start you out with so you don't have to work hard. Of course not, you don't have to work hard. Ha Ha Ha, that's silly. Make sure you eat plenty of grape nuts after your work out". The rest of the world mimicks us so, they want to sit in the machine and squeeze there thighs together, too since that's what cool in California; That's what's jiggy on the streets. Hey, I got an idea, let's do pulldowns for the rest of our lives and never be able to do a pull up, ever, because there hard and the pulldown bar is padded and metal knurling makes my hands hurt. Another good idea, lets make a machine that mimicks a barbell but looks like a smith machine and suck more money out of the M&F world because they don't know any better and they do what we tell them.

Maybe I just believe in hard work, self control and responsibility a little too much. Smith machine represents none of that.


....Or maybe I'm just way out of line.

Bruce Duco
11-22-2008, 09:14 AM
Why not just call Coach Rip? I'm sure he would be willing to travel to your gym to set your boss straight. Or just buy your boss a copy of Starting Strength.

Justin Z. Smith
11-22-2008, 02:30 PM
Hey Justin,

Your statisticool site is pretty cool but alot of your exercises statistisuck.


ADDUCTOR?! FLYE?


Shawn, thanks for your opinions. Regarding the specific exercises, I've always said to edit things as the user needs, in fact I say that on the page. In other words, I'm not really concerned if someone doesn't fancy the exercises I do, just do ones you like.


Justin

Brad Davis
11-23-2008, 09:48 AM
Would he go for front squats?

I think that's the second best option to switching gyms.

Jared Grisham
11-24-2008, 04:48 PM
"Don't worry, you don't have to use a barbell, and when your done sitting on this nice comfy pad, paddling this bike in the recliner position while watching TV, you can come over here and do some 2 in squats in this machine that goes up and down in a straight line for you and locks so you don't need to rack it and here's some 5pounders to start you out with so you don't have to work hard. Of course not, you don't have to work hard. Ha Ha Ha, that's silly. Make sure you eat plenty of grape nuts after your work out". The rest of the world mimicks us so, they want to sit in the machine and squeeze there thighs together, too since that's what cool in California; That's what's jiggy on the streets. Hey, I got an idea, let's do pulldowns for the rest of our lives and never be able to do a pull up, ever, because there hard and the pulldown bar is padded and metal knurling makes my hands hurt. Another good idea, lets make a machine that mimicks a barbell but looks like a smith machine and suck more money out of the M&F world because they don't know any better and they do what we tell them.

Maybe I just believe in hard work, self control and responsibility a little too much. Smith machine represents none of that.


....Or maybe I'm just way out of line.

Thread over. You are awarded one internets.

Aaron Gainer
11-24-2008, 05:05 PM
The smith machine doesn't understand biomechanics, hence rendering it useless except for a coat rack!!!!

John Biddle
11-24-2008, 05:06 PM
Drew - a WFS link posted on a thread under "Exercises" today (title something like "Exercises to avoid") that might be of use to you. I'm sure there are heaps of other links out there, but this one was just sitting there and easy to cut and paste!

http://www.diet-blog.com/archives/20...d_to_avoid.php

Shawn Casey
11-26-2008, 01:59 PM
Justin that was a well mannered and civil response to my assholiness, touche'.
I still can't stand that giant parrot stand.

Justin Z. Smith
11-26-2008, 07:10 PM
...
It's not that I hate the Smith machine itself, I hate the guy that's making money selling the Smith machine and...


BTW, I think Jack LaLane created it (and leg extension machine, and cable machine, and selectorized weight stack), and he accomplished a whole heck of a lot; one smart and fit dude, still! Doesn't he like CrossFit too and his nephew just opened a box?


Food for thought! :)


Justin

Shawn Casey
11-27-2008, 10:56 AM
Yeah but he did gymnastics and you don't have to squat or leg extend or curl or crossover to swim or to do 1000 pullups or 1000 pushups.

I don't see people nowadays doing smith machine squats and then going over to a pole and doing a flag. They do SM squats then they go to the elliptical and then to the squat rack and put the bar on the rack and do 2in curls with the just the bar. Did he contribute to the stuff I hate? Sure he did. Was he already able to do crazy stuff? Yep. Do people do what he did? Nope. Did he know his machines would lead to laziness and bad knees? I'm pretty sure he didnt.

Food for thought.

Mark Martinez
11-27-2008, 05:26 PM
Yeah but he did gymnastics and you don't have to squat or leg extend or curl or crossover to swim or to do 1000 pullups or 1000 pushups.

I don't see people nowadays doing smith machine squats and then going over to a pole and doing a flag. They do SM squats then they go to the elliptical and then to the squat rack and put the bar on the rack and do 2in curls with the just the bar. Did he contribute to the stuff I hate? Sure he did. Was he already able to do crazy stuff? Yep. Do people do what he did? Nope. Did he know his machines would lead to laziness and bad knees? I'm pretty sure he didnt.

Food for thought.

I think the Smith machine was devised, as a way to simulate various exercises under different loads. I used it when I didn't have a spotter because I was afraid of losing it. It helped build my confidence that I could indeed lift a certain load and thus I transitioned to a truly free weight thereafter.

The same can be said with ring pull-ups and muscle-ups. These things are pretty useless unless you're a gymnast. True they're a good test of strength; but, in the real world a wall doesn't warp or twist to your will while you scale it. What the ring pull-up or muscle-up does is give you the knowledge and confidence that you most likely have the strength and agility to scale a wall if you had to.

Let's face it. Most people start out at a spa or gym equipment. They start doing the crazier stuff only when they think they're fit enough.

I'm not condoning the Smith or Nuttyless equipment. Just food for thought.

Robert Callahan
11-27-2008, 05:44 PM
For example to name a few, things like front doors, cabinet doors, closet doors, non-electrical garage doors, dresser drawers, windows, table leaves, a merry-go-round, track lights, shower curtains, removing bowling balls from the return, extendable ladders, and using other strength training machines.

Ok so this is something that is starting to bug me. Just because something sort of mimics real world activities does NOT make it functional. A functional exercise is one that gets you very strong at many real world activities, it does not need to mimic them to do this.

Here is where your analysis is flawed. You take two athletes. Have one train smith machine squats, the other normal barbell squats. The one training barbell squats will be stronger and better able to do "front doors, cabinet doors, closet doors, non-electrical garage doors, dresser drawers, windows, table leaves, a merry-go-round, track lights, shower curtains, removing bowling balls from the return, extendable ladders, and using other strength training machines." than the one training with the smith machine, regardless of the fact that maybe the smith machine better simulates those things.

-Robert

Justin Z. Smith
11-27-2008, 05:59 PM
...
They do SM squats then they go to the elliptical and then to the squat rack and put the bar on the rack and do 2in curls with the just the bar.


I don't really care for hypothetical "they" arguments, so I won't respond specifically to that.

But I do know that people do all sorts of crazy stuff, Smith machine or no Smith machine. I know several people who still do freeweight lifts, even after freeweight lift accidents have severely reduced their bodily function. And runners who keep running after running has produced all their injuries.


Did he know his machines would lead to laziness and bad knees? I'm pretty sure he didnt.


If people abuse a machine or get lazy it is obviously the person's fault, not the machine's. Blaming a machine is like someone blaming a fork because there are obese people who use forks.

Justin

Justin Z. Smith
11-27-2008, 06:15 PM
Just because something sort of mimics real world activities does NOT make it functional. A functional exercise is one that gets you very strong at many real world activities, it does not need to mimic them to do this.


There are many definitions of "functional". Mimicing is indeed the original definition, since the "functional training" stuff arose from a rehab environment. At times, CrossFit indeed uses that definition too. For example

http://library.crossfit.com/free/pdf/USMCFunctionalFitnessConcept.pdf
(safe for work, family, etc)


The body works together as a system and exercises that serve to de-construct what are essentially irreducible (though admittedly complex) movements, can create imbalance, unnatural stress on muscles and joints, do not generate an ideal adaptive response, and most importantly do not mimic the reality that the Marine athlete will experience.


It describes "functional movements" as ones that mimic the Marines' real life.

The second definition of "functional" is the one you mention above. But this second use is so broad and inclusive it can logically include things like bicep curls. For example, we use biceps all the time in real life since we have biceps in our arms, and bicep curls help make biceps stronger. So everytime we use our arms we can partially thank bicep curls for making part of our arms stronger. The second use is indistinguishable from just "strength training".


Here is where your analysis is flawed. You take two athletes. Have one train smith machine squats, the other normal barbell squats. The one training barbell squats will be stronger and better able to do "front doors, cabinet doors, closet doors, non-electrical garage doors, dresser drawers, windows, table leaves, a merry-go-round, track lights, shower curtains, removing bowling balls from the return, extendable ladders, and using other strength training machines." than the one training with the smith machine, regardless of the fact that maybe the smith machine better simulates those things.


Well that may be with that hypothetical, I cannot say. Although if someone using method A is better than someone else using method B at a task, that is frankly irrelevant to saying if method B is useful at all or not.

What I did say was that *in addition* to doing freeweight squats, *I* do Smith machine squats for the reasons I listed. Lifting a freeweight barbell doesn't feel like lifting one on a track, because it is not on a track, and no amount of lifting a freeweight barbell will make it feel like it is on a track.

Justin

Robert Callahan
11-27-2008, 08:36 PM
What I did say was that *in addition* to doing freeweight squats, *I* do Smith machine squats for the reasons I listed. Lifting a freeweight barbell doesn't feel like lifting one on a track, because it is not on a track, and no amount of lifting a freeweight barbell will make it feel like it is on a track.

You are quite correct, squats in a smith machine do not feel like squats with a barbell. If you like doing them so you can get used to how something feels on a track go right ahead, but I would ask you this question: Why do you train with weights in the first place? Squats in general are strength training exercises. So typically people preforming them are looking to get stronger. By fixing the bar path you remove many stabilizing muscles and greatly reduce the strength training potential of the movement as well as set yourself up for imbalances. Perhaps you should read the first part of that quote you used:

The body works together as a system and exercises that serve to de-construct what are essentially irreducible (though admittedly complex) movements, can create imbalance, unnatural stress on muscles and joints, do not generate an ideal adaptive response, and most importantly do not mimic the reality that the Marine athlete will experience.

Smith machine squats can do all of the things in bold very well.

-Robert

Shawn Casey
11-28-2008, 02:48 AM
When I first started going to the globogym I did the bodybuilding thing with machines and barbells. About a year in, I started having shoulder and knee problems. a little later, I started having back and neck problems. When I switched over to crossfit, all those pains started going away and now I'm completely pain free. I use to love the smith machine and the extention and the curl and the crossover and the hammer press. That stuff is like KFC and mcdonalds. Once in a while is ok but doing it all the time will jack you up. For maximal health and fitness never is good. It's the fast food of the fitness world.

I pick up heavy sandbags and barbells mixed with a little crossfit, not a single pain. Working with all that other stuff, all jacked up. If you want to keep using it go ahead. When you start having pains that you can explain, don't say I didn't warn you.

Steve Rakow
11-28-2008, 06:59 PM
Smith machines are just bad news and dangerous.

From webmd - Smith Machines are one of 9 least effective exercises, mostly because the fixed bar path leads to injuries in the back and knees (not to mention unbalanced muscular development) WFS - http://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/features/9-least-effective-exercises

From American Journal of Sports Medicine - WFS -http://ajs.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/32/8/1962

Jury awards $14.4 mil to guy injured on Smith machine - doing too much weight caused his quads to tear and the stops on the machine were too low to save him from his own stupidity. WFS - http://fitnessbusinesspro.com/mag/fitness_smith_machine_lawsuit/

Watch this guy with too much weight on a smith machine - WFS (for this vid at least) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1m6vcyQqx_Q wouldn't want to be him.

Just get a squat rack and go for it. Don't use some artificial fixed bar path machine that doesn't require true functional movement. Pretty much like any other machine used in a globo gym. If you're into machines, you just don't get CF. Period.

Shawn Casey
11-29-2008, 06:52 AM
Wow, ring pullups and muscleups are useless. Wow. Can't believe I read that in this forum. All I got to say is I can already scale anything I can grab but I cant do a ring muscleup. I can almost do a pullup so hard that it turns into a bar muscleup but, I can't do a ring muscleup. Wow, that's like saying the clean and jerk is useless unless your a olympic weightlifter. Obviously you can't do a muscleup either, Mark. Useless. Wow. Is the the crossfit forum?

Shawn Casey
11-29-2008, 07:08 AM
Absolutely no reason to start with a Smith machine to see if you can do something and then move on to the real thing. That's like playing grand turismo to prepare to drive. This is the reason we start with bodyweight ,then pvc pipe, then bar then, 10 lbs, 15, 20 and so on. Hey, lets do the ab curl machine to see if we want to do situps.

Shawn Casey
11-29-2008, 07:33 AM
Justin, you hit the nail on the head. The curl works part of the arm, which will create imbalances because that's what isolation movements do. Justin, do you want super high bicep peaks?

Ryan Brown
11-29-2008, 04:44 PM
Justin,

There is no capacity that the Smith Machine or leg press develops better than the Barbell Squat.

There is no capacity that the Lat Pulldown develops better than the Pull-up.

The free weight vs machine argument should not have to extend further than these facts. Machines work, but their free weight counter parts work far better.

And free weight movements will even develop the capacity to move objects on a fixed track. I find it hysterical that you actually think that opening a door is like doing a machine movement because it's hinged.

If you're opening a door against force, you will be using your entire body to push into it. Your legs will base out for stability and you'll push hard while stabilizing the core to get that door open. You may even get a running start and really throw your weight into it.

How in the hell does that resemble a Chest Press/Pec Fly or Smith Machine squat?

If you have access to the BEST technique to develop a physical capacity, why would you choose the 2nd best? That's dumb.

Justin Z. Smith
11-29-2008, 06:42 PM
Justin, you hit the nail on the head. The curl works part of the arm, which will create imbalances because that's what isolation movements do. Justin, do you want super high bicep peaks?

I've already explained on this forum my thoughts on bicep curls. I do curls intensely enough to get out of breath and eventually have my whole body shake. However big and strong they get is fine with me, as it is just one of several dozen exercises on my list, no special focus.

Do my personal thoughts on if I want bicep peaks or not have to do with the thread topic though?


Justin

Justin Z. Smith
11-29-2008, 06:51 PM
...
When you start having pains that you can explain, don't say I didn't warn you.

Hypothetical future vague pains? Yes, I'm sure sometime in the future I will get some pains regardless of what exercise program I am involved in.

When you were getting your pains, what machines, exercises, and set/reps and frequency and diet were you doing? Could be useful info.


Justin

Mark Martinez
11-29-2008, 07:28 PM
Shawn,

You missed my point in my previous reply when I mentioned muscle-ups in real-life situations. I just put it out there, as an extreme example for both the ring-muscle-up and Smith machine in juxta position. I like playing devil's advocate. However, since you seem to like to debate for argument's sake...

I worked in a warehouse, as a mover for about six months. I have lifted heavy objects off of the ground and yes, once in awhile lifted them overhead. You'd be surprised what you have to do to get things done in that line of work. Oh. Did I mention, I've also had to help hoist a stretcher over a wall in my current position? So yeah. I consider clean and jerk, press, lunge, squats, fairly functional movements.

I've also had to get on top of a crate and occasionally onto the back of a truck which mimics a pull-up and dip movement. I think bar and wall muscle-up comes to mind. However, I'd have an easier time performing the forementioned activities if I were capable of doing a muscle-up on a ring.

When I deployed to Afghanistan, I carried about 140+lbs of gear for more than a 1/4 of a mile. Don't ask me how, but I was issued two sets of IBA to my dismay. Farmer's carry anyone?

I'm not in a direct combat role nor am I a mountainclimber so I don't really climb ropes for a living. Although, I can see how that exercise can be very purposeful.

I agree ring pull-ups and ring muscle-ups are impressive and are a testament of someones upper-body strength. My point was they don't really represent real-life functionality for most people.

Additionally, you presume someone can't do something because you don't agree with them. I need to find some rings around here and make you eat your words. :)

Brian Lawyer
11-29-2008, 07:46 PM
Is this thread a joke? Doesn't the squat rack have those security pins to catch the weight? Also, aren't more deaths caused by bench pressing without a spotter than squatting?

Justin Z. Smith
11-30-2008, 12:17 PM
...
Jury awards $14.4 mil to guy injured on Smith machine - doing too much weight caused his quads to tear and the stops on the machine were too low to save him from his own stupidity. WFS - http://fitnessbusinesspro.com/mag/fitness_smith_machine_lawsuit/

Watch this guy with too much weight on a smith machine - WFS (for this vid at least) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1m6vcyQqx_Q wouldn't want to be him.
...


In both of those examples there was user negligence. How this counts against the Smith machine is beyond me. Obvioosly just don't use more weight than you know you can handle and no matter the weight lift it responsibly.

Looking the other direction, finding vids of barbell injuries or mishaps on the net is even easier to do for some reason, even from experienced well-known lifters.


Justin

Shawn Casey
12-02-2008, 08:15 AM
I think the Smith machine was devised, as a way to simulate various exercises under different loads. I used it when I didn't have a spotter because I was afraid of losing it. It helped build my confidence that I could indeed lift a certain load and thus I transitioned to a truly free weight thereafter.

The same can be said with ring pull-ups and muscle-ups. These things are pretty useless unless you're a gymnast. True they're a good test of strength; but, in the real world a wall doesn't warp or twist to your will while you scale it. What the ring pull-up or muscle-up does is give you the knowledge and confidence that you most likely have the strength and agility to scale a wall if you had to.

Let's face it. Most people start out at a spa or gym equipment. They start doing the crazier stuff only when they think they're fit enough.

I'm not condoning the Smith or Nuttyless equipment. Just food for thought.

Shawn,

You missed my point in my previous reply when I mentioned muscle-ups in real-life situations. I just put it out there, as an extreme example for both the ring-muscle-up and Smith machine in juxta position. I like playing devil's advocate. However, since you seem to like to debate for argument's sake...

I worked in a warehouse, as a mover for about six months. I have lifted heavy objects off of the ground and yes, once in awhile lifted them overhead. You'd be surprised what you have to do to get things done in that line of work. Oh. Did I mention, I've also had to help hoist a stretcher over a wall in my current position? So yeah. I consider clean and jerk, press, lunge, squats, fairly functional movements.

I've also had to get on top of a crate and occasionally onto the back of a truck which mimics a pull-up and dip movement. I think bar and wall muscle-up comes to mind. However, I'd have an easier time performing the forementioned activities if I were capable of doing a muscle-up on a ring.

When I deployed to Afghanistan, I carried about 140+lbs of gear for more than a 1/4 of a mile. Don't ask me how, but I was issued two sets of IBA to my dismay. Farmer's carry anyone?

I'm not in a direct combat role nor am I a mountainclimber so I don't really climb ropes for a living. Although, I can see how that exercise can be very purposeful.

I agree ring pull-ups and ring muscle-ups are impressive and are a testament of someones upper-body strength. My point was they don't really represent real-life functionality for most people.

Additionally, you presume someone can't do something because you don't agree with them. I need to find some rings around here and make you eat your words. :)

First of all, your post made no sense whatsoever.Your comparing an extremely functional exercise, an exercise that gives you the ability to climb anything you can reach, an exercise that is the yin to the clean and jerks yang, to a crappy machine, one that plenty of confidence can be built without by following the squat progression I posted above. A 300 lbs smith machine squat is not going to build the confidence or ability of a 300 lbs back squat because a 300 lbs smith squat can't transfer to a 300 lbs back squat. You can the other way.

I could tell you've never done a ring muscle up because you said it wasn't very functional unless you were in gymnastics. I guessed. Turns out I was right.

I didn't need a life story from you to get your point across. I need logic; logic that didn't come across in your post. I've been around for a minute and I've done alot of research. You've got to know a thing or two before before you get crazy with me.

Mark Martinez
12-02-2008, 12:08 PM
Sorry for the life story. I guess that comes with age. I'm also very illogical at times. I'm not surprised if it didn't come across, as I intended.

I'm not arguing real squats are better than Smith machine squats. You work with what you've got or what you can do. I agree it's not the real-thing but it's better than doing nothing. I liked your Gran Turismo comment in your other post. However, some aviators practice on flight simulators before piloting real airplanes because it helps familiarize them. And that's my point on the Smith, at least for me. It helped familiarize me.

I still don't see ring-muscle up movement in daily situations. I do agree conditioning your body for ring muscle-ups will more than prepare someone to climb or scale objects. I'ts almost excessive conditioning for that purpose. It looks cool though. Which is why I want to do them too.

I do think both exercises (yes, even the Smith) are directly beneficial if you are preparing for Sasuke/Ninja Warrior competition. I think Justin's point about hinges and fixed paths support this. There's a stage where competitors must lift three heavy doors on a fixed vertical path in order to get to the end. The Smith machine can perform the same motion to complete that task a little better than a free standing barbell. As for muscle-ups, if you can do those then you'll be able to do a lot of the obstacles too.

As for ring muscle-ups. I can't wait to try. I can do muslce-ups on playground equipment and walls. I'm curious how that translates onto rings.