Using Weight Machines to Build Muscle

gym equipment

Abdominal Muscles

Our abdominal muscles are so important, in that they help to balance our core and hold in our organs, and aid our organs in certain functions. Like the chest muscles, strong and visible abdominal muscles are a plus to us.

Major Muscles Worked for Abdominals, and the Machines' Weight Ranges

The machines targeting the arm work the major muscles called the rectus abdominis (abs), and and internal and external obliques (obliques). There are several machines that work the ab muscles. The weights on present and resistance machines increase in increments of 5 lbs. The other machine allows you to use only your body weight for lower abdominal exercises. Once again, the resistance machine offers more flexibiity in training both the abdominal and oblique muscle groups.

How Hard Should I Push Myself?

As a beginner in weight training, it should be stressed that you start your journey with either no added weights to machines, or the lower weight amounts. As you master your technique for each exercise you perform, you should slowly, yet surely increase the weight you use. The slow increase in weight will help to build your muscle strength, which is what you strive for in weight training. Each person, in different stages of their weight training, will reach their limit on the maximum amount of weight they use. Please be mindful of any injuries, physical limits, and sudden pains you get either before you start your journey, or while doing an exercise.

Valuable Information on the Weight Machines

When I was a beginner, I noticed that each weight machine I used (in modern gyms) had a sticker on them. The stickers displayed the company name the machine came from, one to three pictures showing the muscle(s) the machine targets, and a brief description or words explaining the names of the muscles worked. This information helped me to decide which machines to use next in my exercise journey. Also, on a few of the machines in the gyms I frequent, there is a small barcode on them. When you scan your camera on this barcode, it takes you to a basic page that shows videos of how to use the machine. Please see the example pics on the right side of this page.

explanation of exercise labels