List of training machine types
List of training machine types
In this article, we will list the types of training machines and explain how to use them. If you are considering opening a gym, please use this when selecting training machines.
Training machine mechanism and features
Weight stack machine or plate load machine
Training machines are classified into two types, weight stack machines and plate load machines, based on the mechanism for changing weights.
A weight stack machine is a training machine that uses pins or dials to adjust the weight, and is also called a selected machine.
Weight stacks use pulleys and cables to control the magnitude and direction of the load. While it is very easy to use for beginners in training because you can easily change the weight, there are cases where the weight is not enough for advanced users because the weight that can be used is fixed.
From an owner's perspective, there are consumables such as cables and belts that need to be replaced over time, so it is important to understand the warranty period of parts before purchasing. Weight stacks also require daily maintenance such as applying silicone spray to the weights and removing dust.
Plate load machines adjust the weight by attaching plates to the machine. Plate load has a fixed trajectory that applies load to the target muscle via a lever, so even beginners can easily apply it to the target area. Additionally, some machines are equipped with safety systems, allowing you to safely train with heavy weights.
On the other hand, it is not preferred by women or weak beginners because it is necessary to lift the plate each time you adjust the weight.
From an owner's perspective, it is necessary to prepare a plate for each machine, which increases costs if multiple machines are installed. On the other hand, compared to Selectized, Plate Loading has the advantage of requiring less maintenance after installation.
Most cable-type training machines operate using an arm with a handle or pad, but there is also a type of training machine called a cable motion that has a handle at the end of a cable like the one shown above.
The advantage of the cable type is that you can change attachments and control the movement trajectory yourself, so you can use one piece of equipment to load your muscles in multiple ways.
On the other hand, the disadvantage is that it is difficult for beginners to use, as it requires the user to control the trajectory of the movement themselves. Also, there are rare types where the attachment cannot be replaced, so please be careful when purchasing.
List of training machine types and how to use them (upper body)
From here, we will explain the list of types of training machines for the upper body and how to use them.
Training machine type 1 “chest press”
The chest press is a training machine that uses the pectoralis major muscle as the agonist muscle (the muscle used as the main muscle), and the anterior deltoid and triceps as the cooperative muscles (muscles that assist the agonist muscle).
In addition to the vertical chest press (or simply chest press), which moves perpendicular to the torso, the main exercises are the incline chest press, whose trajectory is upward, and the decline chest press, whose trajectory is downward. It will be a variation.
The pectoralis major muscle can be broadly classified into upper, middle, and lower parts.If you want to increase the stimulation of the upper part, you can use the incline, and if you want to increase the stimulation of the lower part, you can choose the chest press, which is a variation of the decline. You can do training.
Because the chest press is a multi-joint event (an event that involves multiple joints), the key to any variation is to create an efficient form that allows the agonist and co-operative muscles to work together naturally and allows the use of heavier weights. It is to take.
When using heavy weights, the most important thing to avoid is putting stress on the inner muscle group of the shoulder joint, such as the supraspinatus, which can lead to shoulder injuries that plague many gym users. There is a danger.
There are several factors that put stress on the shoulder joint, but by keeping your chest up as a basic posture, rotating your shoulder blades downward, and maintaining this posture during movement, you can create a natural form that prevents your shoulders from protruding forward, and the shoulder joint This prevents a large load from being placed on the
In addition, in the starting position, if you feel that your shoulders are stretching, there is a high possibility that the load will be directly placed on your shoulders, so adjust the seat height and grip width so that you can feel that your pectoralis major muscles are stretching, while also keeping the load on your shoulders. Set up a position where you don't feel any strain before starting the movement.
Training machine type 2 “Pec fly”
The pec fly is a training machine that uses the pectoralis major muscle as the active muscle. While the chest press has a trajectory that pushes the weight in the front direction of the body, the pec fly has a trajectory that squeezes the weight from the outside to the inside of the body, so the structure is such that the load is firmly placed on the pectoral muscles until the moment of contraction. .
Like the chest press, there are variations in which the trajectory is in different directions, such as incline and decline, as well as types in which you grip a handle (hereinafter referred to as handle type) and types in which you place your elbows on a pad (hereinafter referred to as pad type). Currently, the handle type is the mainstream, and it is often a machine that is integrated with a rear delt, which will be described later.
The pec fly is a training machine suitable for pumping target areas by performing high reps with a relatively light weight. The handle type allows you to adjust the trajectory by yourself as the handle moves back and forth. The key point when using the handle type is to stretch your pectoral muscles with your elbows slightly bent in the starting position, and to feel the contraction of your chest by slightly extending your elbows in the finishing position, which will give a good stimulation to your chest. Masu. As with the chest press, choose a starting position that doesn't put any strain on your shoulders.
There are also machines where you can adjust the starting position with a foot lever, as shown in the video above. The pad type cannot adjust the trajectory, so it cannot have a wider range of motion than the handle type. Instead, you can get a feeling of contraction by handling it according to the trajectory without any technical elements, so it seems easy to use for beginners.
Training machine type 3 “Rear Delt”
Rear Delt is a training machine that focuses on the rear deltoid muscles. Most of them come as a set with the handle type of the pec fly mentioned above, and there are only a few that come alone. There are also a few types of pads.
In order to successfully stimulate the rear deltoid muscles with the rear delt, it is important not to distribute the load to the back muscles, and there are two important points to do this.
The first point is to keep the weight light. The rear deltoid muscle becomes a weak muscle, so if you lift heavy weights, the nearby trapezius muscle will compensate for the movement, and the load will not be placed on the rear deltoid muscle. Try to set a weight that feels light.
The second point is the orbit. If you pull from the front to the back, your back muscles will become the active muscles, and the load will not be properly placed on the rear deltoid muscles. From the start position to the finish position, move in an arc around the shoulder joint, and at the finish position, try to feel the contraction of the rear deltoid muscles.
You may also see advice to ``perform the movement so that the shoulder blades do not close'' in order to avoid involving the trapezius muscles, but if the shoulder blades remain open, the rear deltoid muscles will not contract properly. Rather than the movement of the shoulder blades, focus on whether the rear deltoid muscles are contracting properly.
Training machine type 4 “Lateral raise”
Lateral raise is a training machine that uses the side deltoid muscles as the active muscles. There are two types of lateral raises: handle type and pad type, and the number of handle type is increasing recently.
In order to successfully place the load on the side deltoid muscles during lateral raises, it is important not to distribute the load to the trapezius muscles. To achieve this, just like with the rear delt, using a light weight setting and following a trajectory that draws an arc around the shoulder joint is the key to effectively placing the load on the deltoid muscles.
There are also types that allow you to adjust the height and rotate the arm part, like this Panatta standing multi-flight.
The normal way to use a lateral raise places the load on the side of the deltoid muscle, but by facing the side of your body toward the training machine and moving your arms in the front direction, you can also place the load on the front deltoid muscle. .
You can also place more load on the rear deltoid muscles by lowering the arm height and leaning forward.
Training machine type 5 “shoulder press”
The shoulder press is a training machine that uses the front deltoid and side deltoid muscles as the active muscles, and the triceps brachii as the cooperative muscle.
Since the shoulder press is a multi-joint exercise, it is a training machine suitable for handling heavy weights. Owners need to make an appropriate decision on whether to install Selectized or Plate Loaded, while also looking at their customer base.
One of the most common mistakes is tilting the pelvis forward and pushing out the chest. This position allows you to handle heavier weights, but it creates a trajectory similar to an incline chest press, which takes the load away from your upper chest.
To properly load your triceps, keep your pelvis neutral and lift the weight directly above your core.
Also, if the range of motion is too wide, it will put more stress on the shoulder joints, so the starting position should be with the handles at about ear height, and the finishing position should be just before the elbows are fully extended.
In addition, when the shoulder blades move up and down, the load is released to the trapezius muscle, so be conscious of maintaining the downward control of the shoulder blades as you perform the movement.
Training machine type 6 “Lat pull”
The lat pull is a training machine that uses the teres major and latissimus dorsi as active muscles, and the biceps and lower trapezius muscles as cooperative muscles. There is a cable type of lat pull, which is a popular training machine that is often adopted even in facilities with limited equipment such as small gyms such as personal gyms.
For the cable type, the most popular method is the front lat pulldown, where you grip the lat pulldown bar about 1.5 times shoulder width apart and pull the bar toward your collarbone.
Some non-cable type lat pulls have the axis of the arm behind you, which makes it easier to load the latissimus dorsi muscles.
Since the lat pull is a multi-joint exercise, it is possible to handle heavy weights. However, for beginners, it may be difficult to understand how it feels to use your back, so prioritize using a relatively light weight to get a feel for it.
The key to properly placing the load on your back is to first stand up in your starting position and keep your shoulders down. If you perform the movement with your shoulders raised, it will be difficult to use your back and the form will work on your arms.
During the movement, it will be easier to understand the movement of the muscles in your back if you are conscious of lowering your shoulder blades in an arching motion. Be careful not to raise your shoulders when returning from the finishing position to the starting position.
Also, when setting the weight, set it to a weight that will allow you to stop moving at the finishing position. If you can't stop the movement, there's a good chance that you're using the momentum to push your body down instead of your back.
If you find it difficult to feel your back when doing cable-type front lat pulldowns, replacing the attachment with one with a parallel grip will make it easier to move your shoulder blades and make you more aware of your back.
Training machine type 7 “rowing”
Rowing is a training machine that uses the trapezius and latissimus dorsi as active muscles, and the teres major and biceps as cooperative muscles. There are cable types of rowing, and seated rowing using a handle attachment is the most popular method.
There are variations of non-cable type rowing: high row, where you pull the handle from a high position, low row, where you pull the handle from a low position, and vertical row (or simply called rowing), which is somewhere in between.
Comparatively speaking, high-row exercises tend to place stress on the lower part of the trapezius muscle, while low-row exercises tend to place more stress on the upper part of the trapezius muscle. In either variation, the key points during the movement include adducting the shoulder blades and feeling the contraction of the trapezius muscles, lowering the shoulders and puffing out the chest, and pulling the handle toward the solar plexus.
Also, when it comes to rowing, many movements can be performed on one side at a time. If you don't feel the load when using both hands, you can use one hand at a time and change your posture to create a position where you can feel a stronger contraction.
Training machine type 8 “tricep extension”
The triceps extension is a training machine that uses the triceps as the active muscle. There are two variations of triceps extensions: one where you close your arms and move forward, and one where you open your arms and move overhead. The former puts more stress on the long head of the triceps, while the latter puts more stress on the short head of the triceps.
For either variation, set a weight that allows you to perform high reps, and make sure to feel the contraction of your triceps at the finishing position.
In addition, to avoid pushing using your shoulders or body, try to keep your elbow in a fixed position and perform the movement by extending the elbow joint.
Training machine type 9 “bicep curl”
Bicep curl is a training machine that uses the biceps and brachialis muscles as active muscles. There are two types of bicep curls: preacher curls that can be used to lock the upper arm from under the armpits, and types that can only be used to lock the bottom of the triceps.
One thing to keep in mind is that with preacher curls, just like preacher curls with free weights, the part of the body that is loaded changes depending on where you use the fulcrum to perform the movement.
If you use the elbow as a fulcrum and perform the movement only by flexing and extending the elbow, the load will be greater on the brachialis muscles, and it will be difficult to place the load on the biceps brachii muscles. If you want to put more stress on your biceps, try lifting your elbows a little, using your triceps as a fulcrum, and flexing your shoulders.
In either variation, set the seat position so that the axis of the arm and elbow are aligned. Also, be sure to perform the movement so that you can feel a firm contraction in your biceps at the finishing position.
List of training machine types and how to use them (lower body)
From here, we will explain the list of types of training machines for the lower body and how to use them.
Types of training machines 10 “Squat machines”
A squat machine is a training machine that uses the gluteus maximus and quadriceps as active muscles, and many lower body muscles such as the hamstrings as cooperative muscles.
Squats are a highly effective basic training exercise, but when performed with free weights, they are very difficult and often difficult for beginners to perform. With a squat machine, you can enjoy the training effects of squats relatively easily, and it is a category that should be prioritized when it comes to leg training machines.
The main variations of squat machines are the hack squat, in which the weight is moved along a rail, the V-squat (also known as the power squat), in which the movement is performed while carrying an arm with a fixed axis, and the belt squat, in which the weight is suspended from a belt. is.
Hack squats do not allow you to move your hips back, so your knees are pushed forward compared to other squats, which puts more stress on your quadriceps muscles.
The V-squat (power squat) has an arcuate trajectory, so it is easy to achieve a form similar to a natural free-weight squat with less stress on the joints.
As for belt squats, since the weight is placed on the belt, there is less strain on the lower back, making this squat machine recommended for people with lower back pain. The form can also be performed in the same manner as a free weight squat.
The basic training motion for any squat machine is to squat down firmly and then stand up.
When squatting deeply, the last thing you want to do is have your lower back compensate for the movement of your glutes, which can lead to lower back pain and other injuries. To avoid this, it is important to keep your pelvis neutral and not tilt backwards.
Also, if you have poor gluteus maximus flexibility, you will not be able to squat deeply without compensatory movements from your lower back, so try warming up with dynamic stretching.
Training machine type 11 “Leg press”
The leg press is a training machine that uses the quadriceps and hamstrings as active muscles and the gluteus maximus as a cooperating muscle.
At first glance, the leg press looks similar to a squat, but since the starting position is with the hip flexed, the glutes are less stimulated than the squat, and the hamstrings are put under more stress.
In addition, the upper body is fixed and the movement is simple, flexing and extending the knees, making it an easier training machine to use than a squat machine.
The main variations of the leg press include the horizontal leg press, which is performed horizontally, the 45° leg press (also known as the regular leg press), which is performed diagonally upward at a 45° angle, and the vertical leg press. There is a vertical leg press in which the angle increases, and the load on the hamstrings increases.
The basic principle for the leg press is to perform large movements, similar to the squat. When doing so, be careful not to let your lower back move away from the seat, as compensatory movements by your lower back may occur.
Type of training machine 12 "Leg extension"
Leg extension is a training machine that uses the quadriceps as the active muscle. There are also leg extensions that are combined with the seated leg curl described below.
As a starting position, align your knee joints with the axis of your arms, and set your backrest in a position where you can properly put your weight on it. Tilt your pelvis slightly forward and try to lengthen your back muscles. Also, make sure to dorsiflex your ankles (raise your ankles).
Use a relatively light weight, and in the finishing position, fully extend your knees and feel the contraction. The basic position is a neutral position with neither internal/external rotation nor internal/external rotation, but slight internal rotation will put more stress on the vastus lateralis, and slight external rotation will put more stress on the vastus medialis.
Training machine type 13 “Leg curl”
The leg curl is a training machine that uses the hamstrings as the active muscles. There are two main variations of leg curls: seated leg curls, which are performed while sitting, and prone leg curls, which are performed while lying on your stomach.
The advantage of seated leg curls is that the hip joint is bent, so it is easier to stretch the hamstrings. Similar to leg extension, the basic posture is to align the knee joint and arm axis, tilt the pelvis forward, and dorsiflex the ankle.
Unlike the seated leg curl, the prone leg curl is performed with the hip joints almost fully extended. The unique feature is that the hip position is not fixed, which allows you to add hip extension to the movement in the finishing position, placing a stronger contraction load on the hamstrings.
The key to the prone leg curl is to maintain an anterior pelvic tilt, and be careful not to tilt your pelvis backwards when returning from the finishing position to the starting position.
Type of training machine 14 "Calf raise"
The calf raise is a training machine that uses the triceps surae (gastrocnemius and soleus) as active muscles. The main variations of calf raises are seated calfs, which are performed while sitting, and standing calfs, which are performed while standing.
Seated calf exercises tend to place more stress on the soleus muscle of the triceps surae, while standing calf exercises tend to place more stress on the gastrocnemius muscles.
There is also a derivative of the standing calf called the donkey calf, which places the load on the lower back with the hip joint flexed, which has the advantage of being structurally less stressful on the lower back compared to the standing calf.
In either variation, the key is to use the ball of the foot as a fulcrum and maintain a wide range of motion. For standing variations, be careful not to compensate for calf movement with knee flexion/extension.
Training machine type 15 “Adductor Abductor”
Originally, the adductor and the abductor are separate training machines, but since training machines that integrate these two functions are mainstream worldwide, they will be explained under the same heading.
The Adductor Abductor (also known as Inner Outer Thigh) is a training machine that trains the adduction and abduction movements of the hip joint, with the active muscles being the adductor muscles for adduction and the gluteus maximus for abduction.
The Adductor Abductor is a training machine that is very popular among women, as it can train the buttocks and inner thigh muscles in one machine, making it ideal for creating beautiful lower body lines.
The position in which you sit is important for both movements, so try to sit in a position that is the axis of the trajectory. Also, tilting your pelvis slightly forward allows for a wider range of motion in your hip joints.
Choose a light weight and try to feel the contraction in your active muscles as you perform the movements.
Training machine type 16 “hip thrust”
Hip thrust (also known as glute bridge) is a training machine that targets the gluteus maximus and hamstrings as active muscles.
This training machine uses the hip thrust, which is a popular free weight event for women, and is much easier to handle than free weights, so it is often used in fitness facilities targeting women. It's a training machine.
Hip thrust is a simple movement that involves repeating flexion and extension of the hip joint, and in the finishing position, make sure to fully extend the hip joint and feel the contraction of the active muscles. Also, be careful not to stretch your lower back when returning from the finishing position to the starting position.
List of training machine types and how to use them (full body)
Finally, we will list the types of training machines that target the whole body and explain how to use them.
Training machine type 17 “Adjustable pulley”
An adjustable pulley is a training machine that performs training by operating an attachment connected to weights via a cable.
While free weights apply a load directly below due to gravity, a cable machine can apply a load in an upward or lateral direction, making it possible to perform training that is posturally difficult or impossible to do with free weights. is.
Cable-type lat pulls and rows can also be considered variations of cable machines. Cable machines are highly versatile, allowing you to perform countless training exercises by adjusting the attachment, trajectory, posture, etc.
For example, arm curls, pressdowns, pullovers, flyes, side raises, and abductions are typical cable machine exercises, and you can train your entire body with one cable machine and various attachments.
A machine with a structure in which two cable machines are connected, and the cable machines are separated by a long distance, is called a cable crossover machine. As the name suggests, it is a training machine suitable for performing cable crossover, which is a chest training, and you can feel a strong contraction in your chest by performing the movement from the outside to the inside.
If you perform a cable crossover with two cable machines that are close to each other, you will structurally end up with a chest press trajectory, so be careful.
Type of training machine 18 "Smith machine"
A Smith machine is a training machine that moves the bar up and down along a fixed rail.
The basic usage is the same as a barbell, so it is highly versatile and you can perform a variety of training with one device. In addition, because the trajectory is fixed, it is easy to handle without the back and forth wobbling that occurs with regular barbells, and it is highly safe because the safety is activated by twisting the bar.
Modern Smith machines also usually have a built-in counterweight. The counterweight controls the load applied when lowering the barbell, making it a useful machine for beginners and women when training.
Variations of the Smith machine include those with vertical rails and those with slightly sloped rails. The advantage of sloped weights is that depending on the type of training, it is possible to create a trajectory similar to that of free weights.
For example, when performing a shoulder press, moving the bar from in front of your face to above your head will create a natural trajectory similar to free weights. However, there are some exercises that are easier to perform on a vertical trajectory, so these two Smith machine variations have their pros and cons.
Panatta also offers specialized Smith machines that target the upper body, such as:
You can perform bench presses and decline bench presses on the Powersmith machine, and incline presses and shoulder presses on the upper. Unlike regular Smith machines, it has a handle type instead of a barbell, so it can be operated using only one arm.
This time, we have provided a list of basic training machine types and explained how to use them.
Even if training machines have the same structure at first glance, the usability and ease of handling will change depending on the manufacturer, so if you are having trouble selecting equipment, please feel free to contact Uchino Gym.