A Smith machine has a weight bar attached to a steel guide system. This allows you to do vertical weight exercises without needing a second person to monitor safety. If the weights become too heavy, you can secure the weight bar with a movement of the wrist. In addition, most Smith machines have a minimum height that you can set yourself. And because you only train in one dimension, namely height, you don't have to be afraid of losing your balance with heavy barbells.
You can perform several exercises with a Smith machine, which is why it is also called a home gym. Think of shoulder presses and upright rows. The machine is most frequently used for squats and bench presses.
Smith machines are available in various shapes and sizes. The base consists of two uprights with a guide rod. Nowadays, the Smith machine has a wide variety of versions, such as the weight bench with a Smith function or semi-racks and power racks with a Smith guidance system.
Jack LaLanne is the inventor of the Smith machine. He was a specialist in fitness, exercise and nutrition. In his own gym he developed the first rack with guidance system. In the late 1950s, the first model was used in Rudy Smith's gym, after whom the machine is named.