Ah the mysterious Power Plate machine. Many of you will have seen this weird contraption sitting unused in your local gym, and you’ve probably been wondering what on earth you’re meant to use it for! You may think of the Power Plate as a lazy and boring way to “workout” or even a fading fitness fad that promises great results but doesn’t really deliver.
Being fitness fanatics, we went and did our research and we’ve come to the conclusion that these machines do actually work and can benefit your overall fitness, muscle strength and fat loss when used correctly.
To see how the Power Plate works, we suggest heading over to Transition Zone, a boutique studio in the heart of Parson’s Green that specialises in Power Plate, TRX and functional fitness classes. New clients quickly become regulars and it’s because of the great results they are experiencing. Claire Finlay, Transition Zone’s founder, shares her thoughts on the skepticism surrounding the Power Plate stating:
“In terms of Power Plate being a passing fad I would say it’s definitely not, the problem with Power Plate is its brand positioning was very celebrity driven when in fact many high-end athletes within rugby, football and American football use it. It’s scientifically proven and backed by the medical profession. Not only will you see dramatic inch loss it will get you incredibly strong and increase your endurance and stamina FAST! At Transition Zone all newcomers who have been away from fitness for a while start on power plate, which allows them to get fit fast and progress to other classes quickly such as TRX, HiPer Zone and boxing. ”
Power Plate 101…
What is Power Plate?
Power Plate is a mode of accelerated vibration training. A typical Power Plate class is comprised of 25 minutes of HIIT (high intensity interval training)- a proven fat loss workout that is made even more powerful with vibration training.
Origins and backing
Devised by Russian cosmonauts, Power Plate halved their exercise time from 6 hours to 3. They say a 25 minute Power Plate class is equivalent to spending 90 minutes in the gym at 90% intensity. It’s also medically backed, as it’s been MDD Certified and FDA approved.
How does it work?
The Power Plate vibrations stimulate your muscles, causing them to relax and contract multi-directionally 30-40 times per second. Essentially, the instability it creates within the body is similar to using equipment such as medicine balls, bosu balls and dyna disks. The principle remains the same; the unsteadiness the body encounters with the Power Plate forces activation of muscle fibres within the body’s core musculature. Basically, the more muscles you ‘switch on’ the more toning and calorie burning that occurs.
What exercises are carried out?
Tried and trusted body and free weight exercises are performed. Think arm and leg raises, lunges, planks, oblique twists, mountain climbers, push-ups, tricep dips, burpees, tuck jumps, and squats. Doesn’t sound so easy now does it!
How much do I need to do?
2-3 twenty five minute sessions per week will provide you with the most benefits- think muscle tone and fat loss. Every session will provide a fast and efficient whole body workout. You can even mix-up your current workout routine with one Power Plate session per week.
Whether you are looking to tone-up or lose weight, studies have shown the effectiveness of Power Plate training both with visceral and subcutaneous fat. A study at the University of Antwerp in Belgium, published two years ago, found that the vibrational training was 54 percent more effective than traditional aerobics and strength training in producing visceral fat loss. Furthermore, another study done in Germany proved the positive effects of vibration training on cellulite stating, “…whole body vibration training can defeat cellulite; it can accelerate and enhance collagen remodeling, improve circulation, increase lean tissue, help people to lose fat and reduce the size of buttocks, thighs and calves.”
Improved blood circulation, range of motion and faster post-workout recovery. Plus, who doesn’t love a workout under an hour? It’s perfect for busy mothers and city workers!
Where can I do it?
There are a few mainstream gyms that offer Power Plate in London like Virgin Active, but if you have never given it a go, smaller studios like Transition Zone will certainly provide you with a thorough introduction and ignite your obsession with Power Plate!