I was at the gym and I got asked a question, and that question was Are Fitness Machines Good?
When I go to the gym I am pretty quiet and I don’t really let people know what I do for a living. I just kind of go in there and work out.
One of the guys there, Frank, knows what I do and asked me fitness related questions, and this was one of his questions: Are Fitness Machines any good?
My answers was a 5 part reply.
The first part is the best exercise that you can do is the one that you enjoy doing. If you enjoy doing machines then do machines. If you enjoy doing something else like running, then do something else like running. When it comes to machines, if it is what you enjoy doing and it will get you to exercise and move then do it and keep doing it.
The second part is machines end up being excellent for someone that’s completely new to fitness. The machines are less intimidating, increase your body awareness and get you to understand the typical movements that end up happening in fitness: pressing, pulling, pushing, and squatting movements. It gives you good foundation to start doing more advance fitness and exercise stuff.
The third part is machines end up being excellent for injuries and injury recovery because you are able to isolate joints when it comes to the movements. You are able to control load. You are able to control speed and they are safe to use and you can end up working around injuries a lot easier.
The fourth part is machines end up being excellent for older adults. They tend to be less intimidating. They tend to be in a seated position so they end up having more stability. A lot of times the older adults have balance issues; with the machines it makes it easier for them to overcome those balance issues.
Also with the machines it allows them to push themselves harder and add more resistance because there are less moving parts and the movements aren’t as compounded. They are able to isolate the movements and increase the resistance which will end up benefiting them and improving their function or even maintaining their function.
The fifth part is I end up looking at machines when it relates to almost like a fitness continuum. Machines end up being really good for a period of time and you can progress on to more advanced techniques. That could end up being moving into the free weight area. It can end up utilizing other modalities like kettlebell work or bodyweight work or moving on to the Olympic lifts or weight training. I find machines end up being a nice part in that continuum to more advance and complex movements and more compound movements.
So there you go, that ended up being my answer when it comes to Are Fitness Machines Good? They play a role.
Before I go, I want to hear from you, what are your thoughts on fitness machines – good or bad?
Put your comment in the comment area or Facebook comment area.
Looking forward to hearing from you.
Rick Kaselj, MS