New Advancements in Strength
When thinking about strength training equipment, you may lean toward the traditional — free weights, benches, racks, cable machines. But with recent trends in fitness, like high intensity interval training, coupled with new developments in technology, it might be time to add another type of strength equipment to your gym’s repertoire.
Here, we have highlighted a few examples of equipment companies that are taking unique approaches to strength training.
Recently, Precor acquired Queenax, a company dedicated to delivering innovative functional training options to exercisers. Now, as a part of Precor, Queenax helps operators deliver a wide variety of functional fitness options.
According to Adam Hubbard, the director of product management at Precor, the Queenax has unlimited configurations based on each club’s individual needs. If you are looking for a large functional fitness set-up for Group X, there is an option for that. If you are looking for a smaller set-up, perfect for small group training, there is an option for that.
“The Queenax is meant to be a space multiplier, not occupier,” said Hubbard. “It is very adaptive, with various attachments and accessories, so clubs can make it perfect for their needs. It is also customizable at point of sale, but also over time as new trends emerge and change.”
Fixed accessories include a pull-up bar, a boxing line, a torso trainer or a mini wall bar. Removable accessories that can be easily attached and removed to the wall bars or mini wall bars include a rebounder trampoline, abdominal bench, plyometric platform and more.
If you are looking to enhance your group training experience or just take your members’ workouts to the next level, Matrix’s S-Drive Performance Trainer might be the perfect option. The S-Drive Performance Trainer combines the benefits of weighted sleds, resistance parachutes and harness systems in one space-saving footprint. It includes a sled brake, parachute brake, adjustable harness, built-in sled push bar, a 7-degree incline ideal for building strength and more. There is no need to plug it in, so facilities can place the S-Drive Performance Trainer wherever works best for their staff and members.
The Hammer Strength HD Athletic system of rigs, racks and accessory storage solutions provides clubs with options for an Olympic training and functional training space, with a wide variety of training tools. “The HD Elite System is great for clubs looking to create a small group training space,” said Lauren Platt, the public relations and social media manager at Life Fitness.
For more traditional strength equipment, Hammer Strength Accessories by Life Fitness is your one-stop shop for a fully-stocked strength training facility. The new line of accessories includes bumper plates, bars, collars, technique blocks, Olympic weight plates, dumbbells, fixed barbells, kettlebells, sandbells, wall and medicine balls and resistance bands.
“Hammer Strength Accessories is our first launch into the accessories market,” said Platt. “With over 300 premium products you can find exactly what your facility needs. We try to cater to every facility.”
Technogym’s OMNIA is ideal for varied group training formats involving up to eight different users at once. The OMNIA works all different functions of the body with various stations like bars, rings, boxing bag, ropes and more. With a wide variety of accessory options, the OMNIA can accommodate users of nearly all fitness levels.
In addition, the Technogym Wellness Design Team can assist with designing layout options that best fit within your facility. They also help determine the best accessories based on what each gym owner needs.
The benefit of the Personal Power Plate unit is its size, which delivers whole-body vibration technology, allowing members to improve core strength, balance and stability. According to Tony Swain, the director of key account sales for fitness, the Personal Power Plate delivers on the three P’s: programming, portability and price point.
“The industry is familiar with whole body vibration, and now having a smaller unit allows us to present another option to meet the needs of our customers,” explained Swain. “By having multiple units in a club, more members will be exposed to the scientifically proven health benefits, which will help with product promotion through word of mouth.”
The Personal Power Plate can also be used in the Group X setting with easy integration into existing classes, or as a new standalone offering. “Due to its size, clubs will also have the capability of introducing the modality to additional areas of the clubs, reaching a different group of members — sports, mind-body, group exercise, spa and rehab — all of which will increase customers’ touch points, generate new revenue opportunities and improve your members’ experience,” added Swain.
Keiser is taking a unique approach to strength training, as its strength equipment removes a weight stack. “Keiser introduced pneumatics [compressed air] as the resistance on its strength equipment to allow the member to train at speed,” said Dennis Keiser, founder of Keiser. “We’ve been taught to train at a slow, controlled speed for only one reason — iron weight and gravity. We don’t move slow in our daily lives and we certainly don’t move slow in sport, so why train slow? With a pneumatic resistance system, we can train at any speed, which means the speed of life or the speed of the sport we play.”
Keiser explained, the pneumatic strength training system appeals to a wide variety of demographics within the health club, from elite-level athletes to older adults looking to build strength. “The reason is the intensity of the resistance on the muscle and the softness of the resistance and on the joints and connective tissue,” he added. “We have to treat our muscles and joints as a system. One is no good without the other. Not only can Keiser protect the joints and connective tissue, but it can also train the neuromuscular system at speed, enhancing human performance at any age.”