Smith Machine VS Free Weights Squats : Pros & Cons, With Hugo & Rodzilla

In today’s natural bodybuilding video blog, I cover with my good friend Rodzilla the pros and cons of Smith Machine vs Free Weights Squats.


Is it good to substitute all of your free weights squats with the smith machine version? That is the bodybuilding question that we are covering today. The answer is: this not a good idea.

Rodzilla for example, tore both of his knees with the smith machine. The reason for this is because he was only using the smith machine squat version. As a result, certain muscles that get activated with the free weight version were not being activated with the smith machine. This caused strength imbalances that resulted in the tearing of the knees.

I do believe that the smith machine squats are great but only when used in conjunction with free weight squats. And if there is any reason why you cannot do the squats with a bar on your back, a great alternative is to do them holding a dumbbell in each hand. You can also do front squats (squats with a bar on the front of the shoulders).

Best results from the squat of course come from the free weights. All of your leg muscles (quads, hamstrings, glutes and even the calves) get activated with the proper execution of the free weights squat. Remember that the body is designed to be in a 3-dimensional universe. Thus, when you perform free weight movements you will engage stabilizer muscles that you do not engage otherwise.

Also keep in mind that there is no need to go crazy with the weight. Use proper form at all times and concentrate on pushing with your leg muscles.

One last thing. Remember that if you are super strong on the smith machine that strength will not translate at 100% to the free weight version. However, if you are really strong on the free weight version then you will be super strong on the smith machine version (as this version is more easy.)

Hope that this bodybuilding tip helps. Please let me know what other tips you would like us to talk about.

Until next time, take care and train hard!





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