COMPARATOR / Vibration Platform
Today, this vibration training technology has slowly but surely become a hot trend in the fitness world. In case you've never seen a body vibration unit (or vibration platform) before, it is actually just a step-height platform. Some have a console and handles for you to hold onto, and it lets you adjust certain settings, just like any treadmill. This trend, however, remains reserved for a fairly limited circle of users, as these devices are expensive machines, and research into body vibration is still relatively limited and new compared to more traditional training methods. However, the results of studies published so far look very promising.
Buying a vibrating rig can seem a bit overwhelming at first. The choice is indeed bloated, the prices can fluctuate from 120 € up to 8000 €, and so you can imagine the difference in terms of quality, functionality between the different products.
As with any purchase of a fitness device, the more you invest in it, the more quality is present, and with vibrating platforms, that's probably even more so. Less expensive models will have limited programs, smaller engines and platforms, but that doesn't mean they're unsuitable.
However, by investing in the higher end products, you will obviously get much better results..
We have listed the things you should consider before deciding which model to buy below.
A powerful motor is a guarantee of reliability and versatility (expressed in horsepower HP or in watts W). A high value means the motor is able to deliver the power for heavy duty use and delivers the power to vibrate the platform at a higher amplitude (see below) even with a heavier user.
A larger motor will invariably be quieter than a small one because it won't have to run more to deliver the power it needs. The noise level is important if you want to use the machine in a small room, in an apartment or if you want to watch TV or listen to music while exercising.
Currently, you will see models with motors ranging from 120 to around 900 W (0.4 to 3 HP)..
Frequency & Amplitude
How much vibration does it take? You can adjust the frequency of the platform, which is the number of vibrations per second, which means how many muscle contractions will be done per second. The recommended amount is between 25 - 40 Hz. This is an important criterion, and the wider the frequency range the better.
The amplitude allows to know the vertical distance that the platform travels and is measured in millimeters. Higher numbers mean more intensity on the muscles, and therefore more strain on them. The greater the amplitude, the more intense the workout. Some of the more expensive models give you the flexibility to change the amplitude level and therefore the difficulty of your workouts.
Most platforms have pre-recorded programs. They offer specifically designed workouts that automatically control and change platform settings to coach you and save you from having to set everything up yourself.
Planks, push-ups, lunges, abs, triceps and dips, calf extensions and stretching..
The size of the platform is another important criterion in your research since the larger the platform, the better the comfort and the more exercises you can exercise. A bigger rig requires a more powerful motor to run properly, so generally you'll have to invest more to get both at the same time..
When you're spending a substantial amount of money, you at least want the peace of mind with a good collateral. Lower priced models usually come with 12 month coverage, and for "premium" models it can extend to 24 months. The warranty will come with terms that include use (domestic or commercial) and maximum user weight, so verify that you meet these criteria before purchasing.