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functional smith cable machine

equipment highlight

The Functional Smith Cable Machine offers members a myriad of functionality and safety features perfect for all fitness skill levels. Its balanced rack and stabilized bar design – capable of both cable or weight plate resistance – maximizes workouts and minimizes injury by allowing members to focus more on form and less on balance/stability. When benching, weight stability is a priority. Not only do you want to avoid the possibility of injury from the bar falling or unbalanced movements, but you also want to avoid allowing wayward weight to pull the body out of alignment. Because the bar moves up and down rather than forward and back in a more unwieldy motion, you need not worry about falling or straining forward – resulting in more controlled movements and a locked bar for better form. On the other spectrum of functionality, the Functional Smith allows you to protect your shoulders (some members insist the equipment offers a better workout than free weights), legs, knees and back from injury. You are also able to more efficiently engage your glutes and hamstrings. As an added bonus, shoulder press and chest isolation exercises are easier to perform and more effective.

injury and spotter free

The Functional Smith design helps avoid some of the injuries commonly associated with free squat exercises. Again, the improved stability also means you’re less likely to hurt yourself. Unique to the Functional Smith, the use of stabilizing rods and cable-driven weight stacks eliminates both unbalanced weight distribution and the danger of runaway barbells. As a result, many members gain the confidence to challenge themselves to squat-based exercises without the use of a spotter and with fewer risks to safety. 


  • Cable-weighted exercises place muscles under constant tension. Compared to free weights which constantly changes the angles of joints, cable-weights minimize changes in resistance placed on the muscle.
  • With constant tension comes increased blood flow, resulting in quicker and bigger pumps. The end result is the promotion of larger capillary (fine branching blood vessels) beds that are rebuilt within the target muscle.
  • Cable exercises promote balance; allowing members to focus on correct form and strong peak contractions at the top of every rep – something less attainable with free weights.
  • The Functional Trainer is extremely versatile and offers a wide range of exercises with a complete range of motion. With its ability to adjust the angles and heights, members are able to modify and accommodate exercises to push its effectiveness and target specific muscle groups; allowing a single machine to conveniently offer a great full body workout.
  • The exercise variety and range of motion offered with cable-weights allow smoother and more natural movements, allowing a greater degree of comfort during workouts. By minimizing ballistic impacts (or explosive pushing and pulling motions), less stress is placed on the joints versus free weights.
  • Because free weights require balance, it’s tougher to target specific muscle groups and angles. Cables help attack those specific muscle groups due to the precision of the muscle contraction and ability to maintain consistent angled movements. This ultimately helps create a more chiseled physique.
  • There is no need to rely on a spotter during cable exercises. Spotters are usually recommended when working with heavy weights to reduce the risk of injury; however, by eliminating the need for spotters during cable workouts, members are able to complete workouts quicker and more efficiently.
  • The compact nature of cable machines eliminates the need to rack and re-rack weights – saving both time and effort. With free weights, this process can be tedious and time-consuming.
  • Free weights can often be intimidating to those new to strength training equipment, with some free weight exercises requiring a steep learning curve for ultimate effectiveness. Cable weights are easier to start with and make a great option for first-timers and those returning to the gym after a long period.


Members can take advantage of the added stability to increase their bench weight load – but must challenge themselves wisely. There’s a good reason why we’ve included the Functional Smith as a central part of our Boot Camp station circuit – for one, our members enjoy its effectiveness regardless of their fitness level or previous gym experience. From a beginner to an experienced lifter expanding their load or even a member rehabbing an injury, this unique piece of equipment – only found at Hardcore Fitness – is extremely versatile and an excellent fit within any of our daily programmed circuits.

The Leg Press Function

Resistance machines, such as the leg press, allow movement in a fixed, safe and correct moving pattern – making them great for beginners or people returning from injury, and designed to maximize muscle growth. They’re equally useful for people who want to isolate a specific leg muscle – in this case the quads, hamstrings and glutes – due to its fixed movement not requiring the use of stabilizing muscles. These are often the weak link that limits the amount of weight that can be moved. Members that are completely deconditioned and need the extra support can use the leg press to build up basic strength. The machine itself is designed to act as a guide to safely and effectively guide positioning throughout the entirety of each leg exercise movement. For example, most leg press machines feature a padded backrest to promote proper posture while also supporting your back in addition to hand placement, aiming your focus strictly on the leg exercise movement and significantly reducing risk of injury due to incorrect positioning or poor ergonomics.

Leg Press Pros

  • Promotes strict focus on leg muscles since your back is supported and hands are rested.
  • Offers extra emphasis and variation on leg muscle stimulation by simply adjusting your foot position on the footpads.
  • In contrast to a squat, leg press machines limit the comparable range of motion to focus on quad development and reduce emphasis on glutes and hamstrings.
  • Spotter not required.

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