Getting started on a workout routine can be intimidating, especially at the gym with all the fit experienced conditioned athletes running around making using complex gym equipment like it was second nature to them. Using gym equipment incorrectly not only doesn't help, it can also harm you and lead to injuries which will only hinder you on your path to fitness. Some machines require prior knowledge and possibly a trainer to help teach you the proper form to truly utilize the machine while others only require you using your natural instincts. Here is a compiled list of the easiest and most effective machines for beginning gym goers. These machines are easy to use and intuitive.
1. Incline Chest Press
The incline chest press, as the name implies, is a great and easy to use machine to workout your chest. The incline chest press usually has an incline bench where the user sits and two bars in front around chest level. To properly use this machine, grip the handle bars around 8 inches wider than the shoulder in order to target the chest. Keep the elbows on the same level as your hands and do not let them dip down or else you won't get the full benefits. Extend your arm and slowly return to starting position. Repeat until you've completed your rep.
2. Leg Press
The leg press is one of the easiest and most effective machines to use when you're focusing on strengthening your legs. The leg press comes in a variety of different positions from seated to linear, but the general concept is the same. Whichever way the seat is positioned, make sure your leg is at a 90 degree angle to the plate. Full extend your leg and push the plate forward, then slowly return to starting position to complete your rep.
As our previous blog post implied, the treadmill is popular for a reason. Extremely easy to use, there are an abundance of them at any gym and one of the best ways to burn calories quickly. It's just natural instinct after all so any beginner can hop on and reap the full benefits of the treadmill.
4. Seated Row Machine
You always hear about arm day, chest day and leg day, but rarely do you hear back days mentioned. While you don't need to dedicate a full gym session to strengthen your back, it is absolutely vital to workout your back before you start lifting some of the really heavy weights. Having a strong back will prevent injuries and just improve your overall fitness. To use this machine, adjust the seat until you can grip the bars comfortably at full extension. Make sure your back is straight, grip the bars and pull the handle toward you. Squeeze the shoulder blades at the end of the rep and slowly return the handle to starting position.
5. Lat Pull Down
This is a great beginning step to being able to do chin-ups. The movement is very similar to a chin-up but does not require you to be able to lift your entire body weight, which can be a very difficult task if you're just beginning to work out. Start with low weights until you can complete a rep with good form. Slide your leg under the thigh pad and grip the bar slightly more than shoulder width apart. Pull the bar down toward your chest while keeping your back straight. Hold it for two or three seconds and return to starting position.
These are some of the best and easiest machines to use for starting off a gym routine!