The debate on which is better for muscle growth has been going for decades.
While both of these pieces of equipment have there place in the gym it is fair to say that it is most likely free weights that will give you the best advantages.
When using free weights, the movement pattern is not fixed as it is with pin loaded machines. This will allow you to have greater control over the movement, allow you to engage stabiliser muscles and use the best possible leverage for your body type.
Beginners or athletes with injuries can use the pin-loaded machines to great advantage due to the controlled movement patterns but if your strength and form is up to the challenge, or you are not specifically using the pin-loaded machine for the desired result eg ‘supersets’ then free weights should be how you do the majority of your training.
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