Vibration plates are the latest addition to the “passive exercises” category. These fitness-training aids are increasingly becoming popular and you can find them in gyms, weight loss salons, and even people’s homes. The way in which vibration plates work is based on the concept of whole body vibration (WBV), which involves standing on a platform with vibrating plates positioned beneath the feet. How different vibration plates work may differ, but what these machines do is send vibration signals that trick the brain into thinking that you’re falling. In response to this instability, your muscles contract multiple times per second in order to stabilize the body.
Standing on a vibration plate may feel strange, but it’s not the least bit unpleasant. The results you receive also make vibration training worth trying. So, what’s all the hype with vibration plates and why should you use them as part of your exercise regimen?
Well, the truth is that whole body vibration training has a lot of benefits to offer. If you’re thinking about investing in a vibration plate machine, then get to know what you are paying for. Here are the benefits of using a vibration plate.
3 Vibration Plate Ratings
Cuts Workout Time in Half
Perhaps the biggest non-health related benefit of using vibration plates is the fact that they can cut workout times in half. The vibrations that these machines generate cause anywhere from 30 to 50 muscle reflexes per second. As a result, vibration training can recruit up to 100% of your muscles’ fibers. This is in contrast to traditional resistance training exercises that engage only 40% to 60% of your muscles’ capacity.
Ultimately, vibration plates intensify workouts so that you can get more done in less time during your strength training sessions. Some manufacturers claim that a 10-minute session on their machines can deliver the same intensity as an hour of conventional exercise. While this may be true, it will depend on the frequency and amplitude that one chooses to work with while exercising on a vibration plate. For the best possible results, most fitness experts recommend at least a 15 to 30 minute session of vibration training three to four times a week.
Vibration Plates are so convenient
Another non-health related benefit of vibration plates is that they allow you to exercise with high tech gadgets in the comforts of your home. Most of these units are compact and come in various shapes and sizes that do not take up much room. As such, you can easily find a corner in your home to place one of these machines. This can be a great solution for people who have little time or conflicting schedules to visit a gym.
Strengthens and Tones Muscles
As mentioned earlier, vibration plates cause the muscles to contract and relax at a great rate per second than what they normally would during normal forms of exercises. Therefore, performing dynamic strength training exercises like lunges, squats, tricep dips, and push-ups on a vibrating plate will help build and tone muscles. By sending vibrations to the body at varying degrees of intensity, the body uses up muscle tissue to generate strength. This stimulates muscle growth to meet energy demands, which then causes your muscles to become dense with time. This is why vibration plates are used in rehabilitation therapy to build damaged muscle without the need for weight bearing exercises. Many studies are in support of the fact that this training modality creates gains in muscle power and strength.
Builds Stronger Bones
It has been found that the vibrations generated by a vibration plate can help increase bone mineral density. Having stronger bones does have its own advantages, especially for people who suffer from certain diseases. For instance, ensuring that the body has adequate bone density helps to stave off osteoporosis. One study published in the “Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise Journal” showed evidence that vibration training helped postmenopausal women to increase lumber bone mineral density and leg strength.
Improves Flexibility, Balance and Coordination
Vibration plate movements increase your range of motion beyond what can be achieved with static stretching. As you stand or perform dynamic workouts on a vibration plate, this engages your core and hip flexors to stabilize your entire body. Hence, your balance, coordination, and stability improve with time. In addition, the vibrations sent to your body strengthen the muscles that stabilize your joints. This in turn helps to improve flexibility and joint function.
Raises Metabolism and Boosts Fat Burning Potential
Whole body vibration training raises your metabolism just like any other form of exercise. As your muscles use more fuel and get stronger, you’ll have more energy. An increased metabolism also increases your weight loss potential in addition to helping your body burn fat more efficiently.
Stimulates Production of Helpful Hormones
Because whole body vibrations use up muscle tissues, they encourage your body to produce increased levels of human growth hormone (HGH) to repair and regenerate damaged muscles and bone tissue. Your body will also reduce production of cortisol (the hormone responsible for stress) and produce more serotonin (the hormone that induces feelings of happiness and well-being). This explains why many people sleep better after starting whole body vibration training as their workout routine.
Improves Immune Function and Blood Circulation
The high levels at which muscles contract during vibration plate training causes the blood to circulate more around your body while at the same time stimulate the lymph glands. Increased flow of lymph fluid through the body will help to strength your immune function. On the other hand, better blood circulation will ensure that every cell in your body receives adequate oxygen and nutrients.
Other benefits of whole body vibration training include reliving spinal pain, improving posture and reducing cellulite by stimulating collagen production. With all of these benefits, it’s easy to see why so many people are taking the plunge into vibration plate training.
Like any other exercise, the results that you’ll get from whole body vibration training will largely depend on your eating habits. You can’t just expect to lose weight with a 10-minute daily session of vibration training while eating high calorie processed foods. If you want to get the best results when using vibration plates for exercise, make sure to watch your diet. By eating healthy food and sticking to a regular workout regimen, it only takes a few weeks to see the gains that come from using vibration plates as part of your strength training or weight loss workouts.