I am just starting out with lifting. I am trying to gain size in my chest and was wondering which way would be best, using a Smith machine or the regular bench press.
Regular bench would be better, as you will use more stabilising muscles, which will in turn help you grow.
yeah i have to say if you start out on a smith machine for quite a while, then move to a free weight bench.... its really going to throw you off. i remember i used a smith machine for almost a year, since that was all we had, and when i jumped onto the regular bench.... i had a hell of a time balancing the weight, it was very akward.
Just don't be the guy who uses the smith machine because it lets you put up more weight because it is easier.
I'd say both if you don't have a spotter.
Machines are well known to allow you to lift more... Free weights rock full stop.
As long as there is at least one other person in the gym, then there is always a spotter. Don't be afraid to ask them.