Vibrating Exercise Plates, Vibro Plates, Vibration Plate - exercising equipment for home
A Buyers Guide to Vibration Plates
At Fitness Options we take your health and fitness seriously and therefore we will never use hype to sell a product. We believe that it is essential that you get proper and accurate advice on all products and this is what we intend to do in this buyers guide on Vibration Plates.
THE FACTS about Vibrating Exercise Machines
Nearly every manufacturer of Vibration Plates or Vibro Plates for short, mention how they were used by Soviet cosmonauts to prevent bone loss while in space. While vibration plates may have been used in the space program in a small way, the concept is actually much older. In 1857 a Swedish doctor Gustav Zander began building 70 different steam driven vibration machines and by 1878 he had Zander Institutes (these were basically Vibro Plate fitness clubs) all around the world. Even John Harvey Kellogg of cereal fame made one for the Battle Creek Sanitarium around 1895. People sat on this vibrating exercise machine which shook them violently and was suppose to cure constipation, headaches and back pain.
Today there are still wild claims that vibration exercise plates are the panacea of all health and fitness aspirations. Marketing men will have you believe that vibration plates will give you 'twice the results in half the time' the perfect tool in anti aging and living longer, removes toxins, cures varicose veins, drains the lymphatic system, gets rid of cellulite, builds muscle, strengthens bones and increases stamina and guess what you don't have to exercise. That really does sound too good to be true but its what everyone is searching for and so we unquestioningly believe it. In truth there is still little scientific evidence of what these vibrating plates can do although there is a lot of antidotal claims that they work and that cannot be dismissed and must be taken seriously.
There is without doubt potential benefits for special populations from using a vibration plate. They have shown that bedridden patients, post-menopausal women, fibromyalgia suffers and athletes recovering from injury have all found improvement in their conditions from using a vibro plate. A latest study has also shown that vibration plates can assist with weight loss when combined with a strict diet and normal activity levels. Small increase in muscle strength can also be achieved using a vibration plate but not anywhere near as much as a normal strength training program.
However there are people who should not use a vibration plate. If you suffer from the following conditions think hard before you use a vibration plate: cardiovascular disease, pregnancy, diabetes, epilepsy, blood clots (acute thrombosis) recent surgery, spinal problems (acute hernia, discopathy, spondylolysis) gallstones, kidney stones, recent infections, migraines or tumors. In addition anyone with fresh hips or knee replacements, a pacemaker, recently installed metal pins or plates and women who have had the coil fitted.
How Vibration Plates Work
ALL VIBES ARE NOT CREATED EQUAL
It is true that different vibration plates or toning plates as they are sometimes referred to shake things up differently. The two biggest variables are frequency (number of vibrations per second, expressed as hertz) and amplitude (the depth of vibration, measured in millimeters). The combination of the two results in an acceleration force on the body that is a multiple of the force of gravity (G force).
Then there is the movement itself. Some vibration plates move vertically, up and down and others oscillate from side to side. It is generally agreed that oscillating machines are better as they achieve the same results with less stress on the body.
The G forces created by the vibration plate tricks the body in believing it weighs more. The more vibration generated through the vibration plate the more load on your body. Your body reacts to this by triggering a process called myotatic reflex or a stretch reflex in the muscles. the muscles involuntarily contract many times, depending on the setting. This contraction helps build the muscles to cope with the extra load on it. It is also suppose to stimulate bones and internal organs resulting in an entire body workout.
Buying your Vibration Plate
If you have used a vibration plate in a gym it is probably a Power Plate or a Vibro Gym Vibration Plate. These can cost up to £6000 and offer the best in vibration technology. So if they cost that much what do you get for £99 which some vibration plates are advertised for. Not a lot and in our opinion don't waste your money on something that could cause you serious injury.
Try to buy the best vibration plate you can afford.
As mentioned earlier there are two types of vibration, oscillating (pivotal) and vertical (linear). Vibration plates that use vertical will give you a greater G force but can be hard on the body. Oscillating vibration plates makes muscles contract alternatively reducing the load by a third and therefore is kinder on the body. We recommend oscillating but it depends on your goals.
The vibration plate frame must be heavy duty and made from steel. Cheap vibration plates can be made from plastic or thin tubular steel and have been know to topple over in use.
The more control the vibration plate provides the better. The frequency of the vibration should increase in small increments. This is the best way to exercise by increasing the workload gradually.
Vibration Plate Programs
The vibration plate should give you lots of flexibility with duration times within the programmes. You should never spend more than 20 minutes on a vibration plate and possibly 10 minutes is more than enough for most people. The vibration machine should offer as many time segments in a programme up to the maximum 20 minutes.
Buy the vibration plate from a reputable company with a proven track record in the UK. The vibration machine should have at least one year parts and labour warranty and the company should also offer delivery and installation.