Does using various exercise machines (like machines for chest presses, leg curls, etc.) offer the same benefits as lifting free weights? Which helps you lose weight faster?
Both approaches offer a great way to develop muscle mass and improve your functional strength. Machines are a good way to start out, especially if you don’t always have a training partner. Each machine is designed to work a specific body part and usually has a diagram or explanation of the exercise and the muscles that are affected.
If you’re working out alone, machines offer a safer way to handle weights, you can work your muscles to exhaustion without worrying about the weights falling on you. On the other hand, machines are designed to always work the same muscles with the same range of motion.
Free weights allow a free range of motion and work more of the muscles that you use for stability and balance. Once you’ve established a program you’re comfortable with, try using both machines and free weights for a more thorough workout. Most importantly, always use good form to get the most out of your routine and to avoid injury.
As far as losing weight, you need to engage in aerobic exercise at your target heart rate for 20 minutes or more at least three times a week. Lifting weights will only help you by increasing muscle mass and increasing your metabolism.