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Articles on Why Free Squating is Better?

[quote]Nikiforos wrote:
Smith machine squats have some obvious advantages: Time under tension, no need for a spotter, greater isolation of the legs if required.

I personally don’t do them at all. I love doing squats and I attribute my core strength to them. But obviously some bodybuilders do use them to great effect.

Dorian Yates: "Yeah, I used them for pressing movements, like incline press and shoulder press. I used it for squats, as well. I was brought up in the era of Tom Platz and he always said, “You’ve gotta squat; squats are the greatest thing for your thighs.” Obviously it was true for Tom Platz. He had a good structure so that when he was squatting, the majority of the stress was taken by his quadriceps; his structure was quite short. So I was religiously squatting for the first five or six years that I was training. My legs were okay but they weren’t great, until I began experimenting.

Then, squatting on a Smith machine, I could position my body so it was much more isolated on the quads, less glutes and lower back involvement, didn’t have to worry about the balance aspect. Actually my legs improved a lot when I was doing Smith squats, hack squats, leg presses �?? I could isolate the thighs a lot more. So actually I used the Smith machine quite a bit for squatting."[/quote]

I agree. Well, I don’t care about time under tension all that much, but other than that:

I love the smith to death on pressing exercises… That doesn’t mean that I don’t do free-weight stuff, but it kinda sucks if you don’t have a spotter at this stage. So most of my free-weight exercises are DB based. Bar lifts are done in the smith where I also do my widowmakers for squats
even when doing the heavy set with regular squats and not quite to failure…

Some people do seem to forget that for most bodybuilders, squats really are a quad exercise, not “leg exercise” or “full body exercise” or whatever. Sure they benefit more than just your quads, but that’s how we organize our workouts.

[quote]Cephalic_Carnage wrote:
buckeye girl wrote:
Cephalic_Carnage wrote:
Westclock wrote:
Anyone recommending using a smith machine for squats is a Nimrod.

uh-uh … Guess you better have an elite total to be
spouting the kind of nonsense in that post I quoted…

I didn’t see much nonsense. Would you care to explain?

You post over at IM, so I would have expected you to have come across some post from Dante or one of the other vets on this…

Sure it’s not smart for a Powerlifter, but this is still bodybuilding, right? I’ve been rotating smith squats, free squats and the hack squat machine or leg presses for years and my knees are just fine.

#Edit: Also, simply because I choose to do a set of 4-7 followed by my 20 rep widowmaker doesn’t make me weak.
I can’t squat 1000 once, but I can squat quite enough in the rep-ranges that I use, so ? Do you people think that bodybuilders never add weight to the bar or what ?

I’m not knocking you buckeye, I just found his post a little silly considering that it sounded like he preached to a few articles by certain authors and that’s it.[/quote]

First of all, I didn’t realize that I was in bodybuilding. I believe there is a similar “machine squatting is bad” thread over in strength sports. I’m just now getting my morning coffee. So, sorry I’m a little slow…

As far as the smith machine goes, I hate it. Not because you can’t use it in a powerlifting competition, but because I think it’s awkward and just never feels right.

Machines are certainly useful and I don’t have a problem with using them for legs, but I still don’t see the point of the smith machine. Is there really something special about it that makes it just as good (or possibly better, in certain cases) as a regular back squat? Because I just don’t see it.

Also, I don’t really follow Dante. I go over there because there are several other powerlifters who compete in the IPA.

EDIT: I see some of your reasons for using the smith. Some of those responses were not there when I went to reply.

[quote]buckeye girl wrote:
First of all, I didn’t realize that I was in bodybuilding. I believe there is a similar “machine squatting is bad” over in strength sports. I’m just now getting my morning coffee. So, sorry I’m a little slow…

As far as the smith machine goes, I hate it. Not because you can’t use it in a powerlifting competition, but because I think it’s awkward and just never feels right.

Machines are certainly useful and I don’t have a problem with using them for legs, but I still don’t see the point of the smith machine. Is there really something special about it that makes it just as good (or possibly better, in certain cases) as a regular back squat? Because I just don’t see it.

Also, I don’t really follow Dante. I go over there because there are several other powerlifters who compete in the IPA. [/quote]

Was just a guess that maybe you ventured further into the forums there, never mind that.

It’s afternoon here in Germany, I need to get used to the different time zone thing I guess…

Well, I posted it in a comment above: Machines are just tools like any other exercise variation, if you feel uncomfortable with one, just don’t use it.

I admit that I can’t do a squat the regular way in the smith, my form and ROM differ there, otherwise it would feel awkward for me, too.

It’s not about being “better” than a regular back squat, it’s about having another quad exercise at one’s disposal (-> bodybuilding) that you can rotate in to avoid having to do squats all the time and ending up stalling on those.

Good morning, btw :wink:

i may have to start using the Smith for rack pulling because i got ocmplaints for making too much noise and i think its a lot quieter on the smith.

[quote]LiveFromThe781 wrote:
i may have to start using the Smith for rack pulling because i got ocmplaints for making too much noise and i think its a lot quieter on the smith.[/quote]

Fuck them. Don’t sell yourself short because everyone else is a bunch of bitches.

I still can’t believe this is even up for debate. I doubt any of you are pulling 600 lbs, so why do it on a machine?

[quote]SSC wrote:
LiveFromThe781 wrote:
i may have to start using the Smith for rack pulling because i got ocmplaints for making too much noise and i think its a lot quieter on the smith.

Fuck them. Don’t sell yourself short because everyone else is a bunch of bitches.

I still can’t believe this is even up for debate. I doubt any of you are pulling 600 lbs, so why do it on a machine?[/quote]

To have another exercise for my rotation so I don’t have to do regular rack pulls and deadlifts all the time, which would have me stalling pretty fast. Some people just like to do it that way, and it works.

Also, why would I care about my 1RM ?
This is the bodybuilding forum.

Why are you even debating this?

@Live: As I mentioned I’m short enough for the bar to actually start slightly above my knees, you’re taller than me (I believe?) and I can see where that may become a problem with the bar path and all, just try it out (I shrug backwards at the end of the movement, love it) and if it’s too awkward…

On another note, I don’t do any ME work or such, obviously, so if that’s what you plan on doing on the smith, maybe rather stay with the free-weight version…

im 6 feet tall…72inches, whatever. i always lock out backwards at the end too, i heard thats the proper way to do it so thats how i do it.

i dont know whether i do or dont do ME, im lifting for size not strength. theres nothing better for back thickness than a rack pull though.

[quote]LiveFromThe781 wrote:
im 6 feet tall…72inches, whatever. i always lock out backwards at the end too, i heard thats the proper way to do it so thats how i do it.

i dont know whether i do or dont do ME, im lifting for size not strength. theres nothing better for back thickness than a rack pull though.[/quote]

How do you lift for size, but not strength?
You always try to get stronger anyway, just in higher rep ranges (5-15 or so).

Limit strength in the 1-3 rep zone is not the only “strength” out there…

If I go from rack pulling 90 for 12 to 600 for 12, then I got stronger if I’m not mistaken…

My comment about ME work meant that I’m not sure if it’s a good Idea to lift in the 1-3 rep range on the smith, due to the possibly weird bar path you mentioned.
Your body may compensate when lifting a lighter weight, but 1-3RM needs more tightness and better form and all, that’s what I meant.

And yeah, you’re taller than me… But you likely have a different smith anyway, just see how it goes.

a smiths a smith. i just dont have a legit “rack” to pull on, so i use the bottom part of a preacher curl and stand on a 45.

i lift for size and not strength meaning that i want to get bigger and being strong doesnt really matter. everyone knows that size = strength, i already had a long talk about this in another thread.

i understand where you might be getting the confusion because generally in order to get bigger you need to lift more weight, so you need to get stronger. but i dont really value the strength unless its tied to size.

like, i dont like to eat, but i have to or else i wont gain size. if i could get bigger without having to eat food all the time trust me i would. just like i dont lift in the 1-3 rep ranges because thats good for strength which isnt a direct product to size as its a direct product of size.

…in a last attempt to make this sound sensible, i just wanna get big and thats it.

[quote]LiveFromThe781 wrote:
i just wanna get big and thats it.[/quote]

That’s all that was needed to be said :wink:

You could also try some of the more robust aerobic steps (or oldschool milk crates if you still get those, or anything similar) for rack-pulling if the smith doesn’t do it for you.

[quote]Cephalic_Carnage wrote:
Steel88 wrote:
I can understand your need for solid info regarding safety and muscle gains when squatting so I recommend that you try each one out for a while. While articles will give you all this information covering virtually every aspect of the squat nothing can match the your own unique experiences so the best tip I can give is to experiment with each one for a while on light-medium weight.

You just have to remember that the key to succesful muscle gain is patience, and individualization when training.

The key to successful muscle gain is progression over time, my friend.[/quote]

Yea…I know that, but I figured that its so obvious that I wouldn’t even need to mention it. I do wonder if the op found his/her answer? Heh, well see I guess.

[quote]Steel88 wrote:
Cephalic_Carnage wrote:
Steel88 wrote:
I can understand your need for solid info regarding safety and muscle gains when squatting so I recommend that you try each one out for a while. While articles will give you all this information covering virtually every aspect of the squat nothing can match the your own unique experiences so the best tip I can give is to experiment with each one for a while on light-medium weight.

You just have to remember that the key to succesful muscle gain is patience, and individualization when training.

The key to successful muscle gain is progression over time, my friend.

Yea…I know that, but I figured that its so obvious that I wouldn’t even need to mention it. I do wonder if the op found his/her answer? Heh, well see I guess.[/quote]

Never mind then, I just mentioned it because there really are people on here who believe that bodybuilding is about lifting the same weights over and over again…

They then switch programs all the time and maybe increase the weight throughout the course of their great 4 week program,
but when they start the next one, which has all different exercises or at least completely different rep-ranges, they start from square one again…

Like Ronnie said, everybody wants to be a bodybuilder, but nobody wants to lift any heavy ass weight… (ok, so his version was a little different).

You know what I mean…

Thanks for all attention people,

For now, I only found an interesting article about alternative uses for the Smith Machine, very interesting BTW:

Thanks,

UB.

[quote]UBorba wrote:
Thanks for all attention people,

For now, I only found an interesting article about alternative uses for the Smith Machine, very interesting BTW:

Thanks,

UB.[/quote]

I can think of quite a few better uses in regards to bodybuilding…
Even a Triceps exercise that beats the shit out of 90 percent of all other tri exercises… But that’s secret DC content meant only for bodybuilders to know :wink:

[quote]Cephalic_Carnage wrote:
Westclock wrote:
Anyone recommending using a smith machine for squats is a Nimrod.

The range of motion is really screwy and you have to put your knees really far forward just to get a decent position.

I would go as far as to say squatting on a smith machine is not only more dangerous long term knee wise, but also remarkably inferior to barbell squats.

Squats are not dangerous at all as even without safety pegs you can always just drop the bar off your back, and if you have pegs and you get stuck at the bottom you just sit down and the pegs catch it.

How can anyone think a smith machine is safer than pegs ? I dont have to rotate a bar around to use a peg, I just drop 400 pounds off my back.

And saying your a “body builder” is no excuse for being useless strength wise.

Just because you train for size doesn’t mean you should be squatting with pussy weight.

I you want to look muscular but be completely useless, just wear one of those padded superman chests kids wear on Halloween.

I’m mightily curious as to what your stats are…

#Edit:
Occupation:
Weight: 215
Height: 6’
Body fat %: 9-10%
Years Training: 5

uh-uh … Guess you better have an elite total to be
spouting the kind of nonsense in that post I quoted…[/quote]

I believe I answered the question on my raw total in the other thread you asked me in. I never claimed to be elite, I do claim to know a little something about squatting and knee health.

Ive had knee surgery as a result of my earlier mistakes.

[quote]

I can think of quite a few better uses in regards to bodybuilding…
Even a Triceps exercise that beats the shit out of 90 percent of all other tri exercises… But that’s secret DC content meant only for bodybuilders to know ;)[/quote]

I’m a bodybuilder, beginner but still a bodybuilder.
I know while people get experience also grows creativity to do the work better and all that things, it happens to me with my work, with my hobies, etc.

[quote]Westclock wrote:
Cephalic_Carnage wrote:
Westclock wrote:
Anyone recommending using a smith machine for squats is a Nimrod.

The range of motion is really screwy and you have to put your knees really far forward just to get a decent position.

I would go as far as to say squatting on a smith machine is not only more dangerous long term knee wise, but also remarkably inferior to barbell squats.

Squats are not dangerous at all as even without safety pegs you can always just drop the bar off your back, and if you have pegs and you get stuck at the bottom you just sit down and the pegs catch it.

How can anyone think a smith machine is safer than pegs ? I dont have to rotate a bar around to use a peg, I just drop 400 pounds off my back.

And saying your a “body builder” is no excuse for being useless strength wise.

Just because you train for size doesn’t mean you should be squatting with pussy weight.

I you want to look muscular but be completely useless, just wear one of those padded superman chests kids wear on Halloween.

I’m mightily curious as to what your stats are…

#Edit:
Occupation:
Weight: 215
Height: 6’
Body fat %: 9-10%
Years Training: 5

uh-uh … Guess you better have an elite total to be
spouting the kind of nonsense in that post I quoted…

I believe I answered the question on my raw total in the other thread you asked me in. I never claimed to be elite, I do claim to know a little something about squatting and knee health.

Ive had knee surgery as a result of my earlier mistakes.[/quote]

Yeah, it’s all good man, never mind.
As I said somewhere else, there are different ways to squat in the smith and when none of those works don’t do them… As a powerlifter: Don’t do them at all (I guess), and sure as hell don’t do 1-4 rep max effort work in there…
But for bodybuilders they can be really useful IF you can do them.
Rotate them with other Quad exercises to keep from stalling etc etc… All been said.

Sorry to hear about your injury, btw… Mind saying what the exact injury was ? (just out of curiosity)

#Edit: It’s past midnight over here, so good night guys…

[quote]Cephalic_Carnage wrote:
Westclock wrote:
Cephalic_Carnage wrote:
Westclock wrote:
Anyone recommending using a smith machine for squats is a Nimrod.

The range of motion is really screwy and you have to put your knees really far forward just to get a decent position.

I would go as far as to say squatting on a smith machine is not only more dangerous long term knee wise, but also remarkably inferior to barbell squats.

Squats are not dangerous at all as even without safety pegs you can always just drop the bar off your back, and if you have pegs and you get stuck at the bottom you just sit down and the pegs catch it.

How can anyone think a smith machine is safer than pegs ? I dont have to rotate a bar around to use a peg, I just drop 400 pounds off my back.

And saying your a “body builder” is no excuse for being useless strength wise.

Just because you train for size doesn’t mean you should be squatting with pussy weight.

I you want to look muscular but be completely useless, just wear one of those padded superman chests kids wear on Halloween.

I’m mightily curious as to what your stats are…

#Edit:
Occupation:
Weight: 215
Height: 6’
Body fat %: 9-10%
Years Training: 5

uh-uh … Guess you better have an elite total to be
spouting the kind of nonsense in that post I quoted…

I believe I answered the question on my raw total in the other thread you asked me in. I never claimed to be elite, I do claim to know a little something about squatting and knee health.

Ive had knee surgery as a result of my earlier mistakes.

Yeah, it’s all good man, never mind.
As I said somewhere else, there are different ways to squat in the smith and when none of those works don’t do them… As a powerlifter: Don’t do them at all (I guess), and sure as hell don’t do 1-4 rep max effort work in there…
But for bodybuilders they can be really useful IF you can do them.
Rotate them with other Quad exercises to keep from stalling etc etc… All been said.

Sorry to hear about your injury, btw… Mind saying what the exact injury was ? (just out of curiosity)

#Edit: It’s past midnight over here, so good night guys…[/quote]

I tore the little disc the knee rides on. Called a meniscus tear or something.

that sounds really painful. howd you manage that?

[quote]Cephalic_Carnage wrote:
Steel88 wrote:
Cephalic_Carnage wrote:
Steel88 wrote:
I can understand your need for solid info regarding safety and muscle gains when squatting so I recommend that you try each one out for a while. While articles will give you all this information covering virtually every aspect of the squat nothing can match the your own unique experiences so the best tip I can give is to experiment with each one for a while on light-medium weight.

You just have to remember that the key to succesful muscle gain is patience, and individualization when training.

The key to successful muscle gain is progression over time, my friend.

Yea…I know that, but I figured that its so obvious that I wouldn’t even need to mention it. I do wonder if the op found his/her answer? Heh, well see I guess.

Never mind then, I just mentioned it because there really are people on here who believe that bodybuilding is about lifting the same weights over and over again…

They then switch programs all the time and maybe increase the weight throughout the course of their great 4 week program,
but when they start the next one, which has all different exercises or at least completely different rep-ranges, they start from square one again…

Like Ronnie said, everybody wants to be a bodybuilder, but nobody wants to lift any heavy ass weight… (ok, so his version was a little different).

You know what I mean…[/quote]

Yea I hear ya loud and clear on that one it’s just annoying to see people working out like that…its such a waste of time and energy.