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COMPARATOR / Smith Cage Machine

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If the basic weight benches had so far the wind in their sails, the guided load benches are gradually overtaking the latter in sales. So which one to choose?

If the basic bench is often compared to a Swiss army knife of sports equipment, the guided load bench is a Swiss army knife from which the cutting tools have been removed. Offering a wide range of exercise with just one piece of equipment, it's no wonder it's one of the most popular devices for home athletes.

 

KEY POINTS

Comfort
Given the multitude of potential users, benches are often sold in standard sizes with possible modifications to the seat and backrest. We test the bench with different templates to see if the movements are not affected.

Convenience of use
Is the device easy to use (change from one exercise to another, accessible weight change pin), mechanical buttons or a dial. But above all, is it easy to handle? Its use must absolutely be simple.

Mounting
This section is specific to the guided load bench as their assembly can prove to be a headache. The many cables and pulleys come and cross and it is not uncommon to make a mistake.

Functions and options
Some models integrate positions that can be quite practical such as the leg-extension, the butterfly, the biceps desk, the high pulley, the low pulley ... Finally, all the benches are not supplied with the same accessories.

Max load
The Maximum Charge is another essential criterion when it comes to purchasing. This load includes the user's weight plus the payload. The ceiling varies according to your needs (work in strength, power, explosiveness, reinforcement ...).

 

TEST PROCEDURES

It is our expertise and the ability to manipulate many devices to compare them that allow us to assess their ease of use. The positions, functions and options available also occupy an important place in this section. As for the “basic” benches, we check the overall comfort with testers having different sizes. We then carry out with these same testers several courses by modifying the load, the intensity and finally check the stability and the overall ergonomics. Finally, we measure the effectiveness of the proposed exercises.

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