Dallas, TX Boot Camp and Personal Trainer Tip of the Month
Exercise Machines vs. Free Weights (body weight or resistance training)
Many of you have been in a fitness gym or at least have seen what a fitness gym looks like. Fitness gyms can be a little overwhelming with all the different types of fitness equipment and machines they have in there. Most all fitness gyms have exercise machines, a free weight area (benches and dumbbells) and they also have an area where there is cardio equipment. If you have not been in a gym, you have at least scene them on TV trying to sell a machine or some fitness equipment that will help you get RESULTS . This article will help answer some questions you may have about machines and free weights (body weight or resistance training). What fitness equipment is right for you? Which ones are safe? Which area in the gym would be best for you to workout? Why are some of the personal trainers using the machines with a client and other fitness trainers are using the free weight area? What exercises should I do for weight loss? Should I use the machines or free weights? These are just a few of the questions that I get asked about when it comes to machines, free weight, and cardio equipment.
It is important to know what you are doing because many people get hurt both on machines and doing free weights because they just do not know HOW TO PERFORM THE EXERCISE. I am a firm believer that if you know HOW to perform the exercise, you will get much more OUT of the exercise. If you do this for each exercise, your body will have to work harder which means that it will burn more calories. Most people that come to Get You In Shape are looking for a few things. Weight loss, better health, a jump start on a program, body toning, slimming down, sports performance, and other health and wellness goals are some of the reasons people look us for help. When it comes to what exercise equipment to use, I am just going to help give you suggestions and what we think and what we believe helps produce results. As with anything, we suggest you do research and see what other personal trainers and leading fitness professionals think about this topic. Most of the research will say there is not really a scientifically proven answer to this. Exercising regularly (5-6 times a week), eating a healthy diet, and ensuring your body is getting enough vitamins, nutrients, and anti-oxidants to help fill in the nutritional gaps are all factors in staying healthy and reaching your goals. If you are doing all of these (consistently over time) it is just a matter of time before your body responds in a positive way and it changes into its natural state (which is different for everyone). Before starting any new fitness and nutrition program, I would recommend that you consult a professional to help you get started.
Machines – Benefits
If you are new to exercising and don’t really know what you are doing, using the machines can be a good start. Many beginners are not sure about their bodies range of motion and the machines help keep you body in the right range of motion. This will help reduce the risk of injury for most people starting out if they are using the proper weights. Many gyms also have all the machines close together. This allows people to go from one machine to another helping you work different muscles in sort of a circuit manner. Many of the machines have a picture and explanation of the machine making it easy to use.
Negative Benefits – Since you are moving in the same range of motion, your muscles and your body gets used to that same motion and can cause muscle overload on those muscles, which can increase the risk of injury to the muscles. You use a number of different muscles when reaching down to pick up a child, machines are not very functional at all. Functional means everyday activities that you do like walking, picking up things, pushing something, throwing, running, jumping, and other exercises your body does everyday. Machines are not functional at all and this is the main reason why we believe body weight or resistance training is more effective.
Free weight (body weight or resistance training) – Benefits
I will begin by stating that Get You In Shape programs are all based on body weight and resistance exercises. Functional training, body awareness, body alignment, balance, stability, strength, flexibility and other factors are all a big part of what we do each and every day for our boot camp and personal training clients. I will also add that we know people are paying our company for RESULTS (weight loss, toning, sports performance, better health, etc) so this article is not only going over how you can more effectively do more with an exercise, but also which workout style is better for your fitness and weight loss goals. Looking at the difference between machines and free weights (body weights) it is easy for us to know which ones to help our clients get results for everyday functional use AND for what their real goal is (mostly to look better). Each body weight or resistance exercise calls synergistic muscles that help to support your body through the lift which just means that more than one muscle groups is having to work during the exercise. Whenever you perform a free weight (body weight or resistance training) exercise, you are using proprioreception, which is the brain’s ability to know where the body is in space and whether or not it is balanced. Choosing free weights will help to train your mind and improve everyday activities. This is a very important skill for athletes or anyone who plays sports. One of the most basic benefits is that the cost is very inexpensive. A mat, medicine ball, stability ball, dumbbells, tube bands, and a kettle bell are just a few of the inexpensive fitness items you can get. You go and look at any park out there and see people doing body weight exercises which points out that resistance training can be done anywhere, which is very convenient. You don’t have to have a gym with fancy equipment.
Negative or cons – Free weights (body weight or resistance training) can lead to injuries to your body if you do not know HOW to properly perform an exercise. Looking at our over 2,000 boot camp and personal training clients and participants over the last few years, many people just do not know how to move their bodies. When you are not moving your body properly, there can be some injuries that occur. This is one of the main factors we cover in our boot camp and personal training programs. We have personal trainers and fitness coaches that teach people HOW to move and having them learn to listen to their bodies. This would be one the biggest problems with free weights and resistance training. If you are doing it wrong or do not know HOW to do an exercise, it could possibly lead to injury.
Machines vs Free weights (body weight or resistance training)? If you are educated on HOW to do the exercise, it can be effective at helping you reach your weight loss and fitness goals. Each person will need to factor in a few things when working out that will help them get the most out of the workout. Exercise tempo, repetitions, how long each exercise takes, how long of break you take in between, and exercise programming are all factors that help make your workouts harder and tougher, which will help you reach your weight loss and fitness goals faster.
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