Staying away from dumbbell work is another training mistake. One man who knew how critical dumbbell work was the legendary Pat Casey, the man officially credited for being the first bench press of 600 lbs. Plenty of heavy dumbbell incline presses was done before he reached that landmark weight in the bench press.
Besides exercising the muscles for greater ranges, dumbbell work requires stabilization of the joint which makes succeeding barbell work much easier. Of course, for practical and physiological reasons, this principle applies more to the training of the upper extremities.
To further elicit more motor units, I strongly suggest that you get into thick handle dumbbells like the ones sold on GraceFitness.com
One of the best compliments I had for my Arizona training facility came from strength legend Bill Kazmaier who came in my facility to get a shoulder treatment. He came early for his appointment so he asked if he could get in a quick workout. Once he saw my thick handle dumbbells, his eyes lit up like a four year old kid on Christmas morning. After his workout, we had a quite a chat on the role of thick handles in developing strength and mass.
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The use of dumbbells gives you a much more comprehensive strengthening effect because the workout engages your stabilizer muscles, in addition to the muscle you may be pin-pointing. Without all of the belts and artificial stabilizers of a machine, you also engage your core muscles, which are your body's natural stabilizers.