Let's Do It Standing Up
by Dino Brunetti,
Welcome to 'Fierce Friday'. It's always better standing up right? Sometimes its even better bent over. You can even do it with one leg up on the bench. Get your mind out of the gutter people...I'm talking about lifting weights here. You can visit any number of corporate gyms that will have machines with big comfy cushions, seat belts to strap you in and a handy little diagram showing you which muscle its designed to work. Essentially they're trying to dumb it down for you when in reality they're over complicating the matter. I mean how much more simplistic can you get than picking a weight up off the floor (i.e. deadlift).
I'm not saying that all of these machines are useless. They can be extremely beneficial when recovering from an injury or for bodybuilders that are trying to target a specific muscle or just get an all out pump. But for those of us that are able to safely train with free-weights these machines are nothing but a crutch for the lazy.
When you train while standing you incorporate all of your stabilizing muscles. What are stabilizing muscles you ask? Imagine doing a military press (lifting a barbell from chin level to straight above your head). The targeted muscles for this exercise are your shoulders but when performed while standing you're calling on every muscle you have from your shoulders down to your toes to "stabilize" the rest of your body. Even though these muscles aren't helping you to lift the weight they are flexed and tightened, providing a solid foundation to keep you from toppling over. Now that same move done while sitting down will give you the freedom to tap your feet to the death metal blasting through your ear buds.