5 Gym Commercial Machines You Should Have In Your Gym

“It’s true that if you’re using free weights you have to recruit so many stabilizing muscles,” says David Edgington, qualified trainer and director for The Deaf Gym. “But when you’re getting started, using selector equipment (the machines with weighted plates) and just learning the movement pattern is OK.”

Horizontal Seated Leg Press

What you’re working: quads, glutes, hamstrings, calves
Why it’s worth it: All of the trainers we spoke with agreed this was their must=use lower-body machine. “If people use this with correct technique, it can help you move toward squats” David says.

Lat Pull-Down

What you’re working: latissimus dorsi (“broadest muscle of the back”), shoulder girdle
Why it’s worth it: If you’re interested in ever doing a pull-up, this is a great place to start. You’ll build your back muscles and start activating the entire posterior chain

Cable Biceps Bar or Cable Triceps Bar

What you’re working: Biceps and triceps respectively
Why it’s worth it: “These are great for avoiding the swinging that happens with dumbbells,” says Todd Garner, qualified trainer. As with all of these movements, you’ll get the most out of it when you slowly raise and lower the weight. The cable here helps force you to do that.

Chest Press

What you’re working: Chest, biceps, triceps
Why it’s worth it: The chest press machine is a similar motion to a push-up,” Todd says. If you’re new to working out, building up your chest, biceps, and even your triceps will all be helpful for more compound movements later on.

Hanging Leg Raise

What you’re working: Core, hip flexors
Why it’s worth it: “This is easy to operate and a great way to work your abs by propping up on your forearms and simply lifting—not swinging—your legs up,” David says.

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