Based in Massachusetts, Cybex International is a leading exercise equipment company specializing in commercial and home fitness machines. One of its most versatile pieces of strength training equipment is the Plate Loaded Smith Press, commonly referred to as a Smith Machine. Found in fitness clubs and home gyms around the world, the Smith Press, as of January 2011, is one of the 150 pieces of strength equipment offered by Cybex.
The Smith Machine, by design, allows you to perform a multitude of exercises. A horizontal bar that moves along two tracks can be adjusted for different positions and different exercises. Common lower body exercises include back squats, weighted stationary lunges and calf raises. Upper body exercises can be performed by moving a bench inside the Smith Machine, and includes exercises such as the bench press, shoulder press and incline press.
Cybex built the Smith Machine with an open, walk-through design for easy access from the front or back. This design also allows you to move benches inside the machine for different exercises. Without weight added, the bar on the Smith Machine provides about 15 lbs. of resistance, allowing exercisers all fitness levels to use the machine. The tracks for the bar can be hooked into 18 positions ranging in 4-inch increments.
The adjustability of the bar position and numerous exercises are the primary benefits to the Cybex Smith Machine. The 18 positions allow you to use the machine as a self-spotter while performing heavy lifts through a smooth, full range of motion. For example, you can perform the bench press and hook the bar in a "locked" position if you fail on a repetition. Another benefit is the ability to choose different colors to match your gym -- black chrome, platinum sparkle, metallic gold, black texture or white texture.
The Cybex Smith Machine requires a large amount of space and is relatively heavy. It measures 54 inches long, 84 inches wide and 84 inches high, making it suitable for commercial fitness clubs. It weighs 380 lbs., so it stays in place while performing different exercises, but is difficult to move.