Incline Bench Machine vs Free

Discussion in 'Basic Training Principles and Methods' started by swimbody, Apr 10, 2003.

  1. swimbody

    swimbody New Member

    Just wanted to know what the difference is between machine incline bench and free. I have no one to spot me so I have been doing the incline bench machine for 5 weeks now to increase my strength so I don't look like a total weenie on the free weights...once again, no spotter so I want to be successful at free weights. I am at 5s now and I'm pushing up 200, tomorrow I jump up to 220 since the machine only goes up in 20lb increments. How will this translate to free weight?
  2. Kate

    Kate New Member

    Hiya, Swim!

    I wouldn't recommend switching exercises at this point unless you have to. Translating from machine to free weight is tricky business. The only way I know to do it well is to know what your maxes are for both exercises and work backwards from there.

    The best way to learn your free weight exercise is to do a bunch of them with less weight... in other words start with them next cycle if you'd like.

    Will you have enough weight on the stack to complete your fives? If so, stick with the machine. As Ann Landers used to say, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"

  3. swimbody

    swimbody New Member

    ;) I did see a huge difference between free and machine. Almost 65 pounds. I have an incline of 175 lbs 3 times on free and 240 5 times on machine. The difference is huge. Much more challenging on free. I will work on the free since I notice a new sensation in my pecs as a result of today.
  4. Blade

    Blade Super Moderator Staff Member

    Machines often have a leverage factor. Much like a wheelbarrow allows you to lift more than you could normally lift. There is also the stability factor, where you use more energy to coordinate and balance the bar on a free weight. I think you should build your foundation with free weights, being particular with correct form, i.e. no bouncing or cheating - only controlled movements.

    You should be moving up in weight in no time once you have learned to perform the exercise correctly.

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