Ironmaster IM2000 exercises

Add a bench, a barbell, some J-hooks and spotter bars to the Ironmaster IM2000 and you can perform a full range of exercises, including squats, bench presses and cable work. Add some dumbbells too and you really are good to go.

I get a reasonable amount of feedback about the review of the Ironmaster IM2000 I published a few years ago. One of the most frequent questions I’m asked is what exercises can be done on the IM2000, so I’ve decided to create this article to answer that question.

My list of exercises is far from exhaustive, but it should give you an idea about the sorts of exercises you can use the IM2000 for.

IM2000 alone

Ironmaster IM2000 lat pulldown setup. In this section I’ll cover what exercises you can do with the IM2000 alone, without any accessories or even a bench. I’m referring to the IM2000’s self-spotting bar as a Smith here because that’s more or less what it is.

  • Smith squat,
  • Smith rack pull,
  • lat pulldown,
  • cable row,
  • triceps pressdown,
  • cable curl,
  • calf raise.

IM2000 and bench

Ironmaster IM2000 with Ironmaster Superbench. Add in a bench and you can also perform the following exercises:

  • Smith bench press,
  • Smith incline bench press,
  • Smith decline bench press,
  • Smith close grip bench press,
  • Smith seated shoulder press,
  • seated calf raise.

Of course, having a bench also opens up any other exercises that need a bench, such as the dumbbell equivalent of many of the above.

IM2000, bench, J-hooks and barbell

Ironmaster IM2000 with barbell, J-hooks and spotter bars. If you get the J-hooks and a barbell you really should get the spotter bars too, but your range of exercises now includes all the standard barbell exercises.

  • Barbell bench press,
  • barbell incline bench press,
  • barbell decline bench press,
  • barbell close grip bench press,
  • Military press,
  • barbell squat.

Now that you have a barbell, you’re set up for exercises outside of the IM2000 too, such as deadlifts, curls, barbell rows etc.

IM2000, bench, J-hooks, barbell and pull-up bar

Ironmaster IM2000 with pull-up bar. You can add a couple more exercises if you add the pull-up bar to the IM2000.

  • Pull-ups,
  • chins.

My view

I couldn’t live without a bench and plain barbell exercises and I’d suggest it would be the same for you, in time if not immediately. My advice would be to bite the bullet at the outset and buy the J-hooks, spotter bars and an Olympic barbell when you buy the IM2000. Any bench will do but I’d suggest one that offers a number of angles of attack and caters for incline, decline and (seated) upright work. I have the Ironmaster Super Bench and a number of attachments to go with it.

The mainstay of my workouts are barbell squats, barbell deadlifts, barbel bench presses, bent over barbell rows and military presses and at least two of those exercises are in 90% of my workouts. I rotate other exercises as I choose.

I don’t use the IM2000’s Smith attachment all that much as it happens. I really like it for decline bench presses, close grip bench presses, seated shoulder presses and for calf work, and I sometimes use it for flat or incline bench presses just for a bit of variety. In general, though, I prefer standard barbell work. I’ve never liked squats on any Smith machine — they just don’t feel right.

The IM2000 is a rack, Smith machine and hi/low pulley cable machine. It remains one of the best bits of exercise equipment I’ve ever bought, particularly for a tight workout area.