Being kept in suspense can be a good thing, especially if you’re looking to improve your core stability and build up muscles of steel. Pitting your personal strength against your own body weight, suspension training is resistance exercise at its toughest.
Inspired by gymnastic equipment, suspension training uses non-elastic industrial-strength straps to push your body to its limit. Attached to an exercise beam, bar or even a door frame, the straps make it possible to suspend part of your body in the air. Then, by using the rest of your body’s weight as resistance, you can perform over 300 various exercises to tone up tums, bums, guns and any other parts of the body on your hit list.
Recognised as one of the toughest types of training, it’s claimed anyone can use suspension techniques to increase their strength, stability and endurance as it’s possible to adjust the difficulty ratings for each exercise. Easily altered by changing your body position or the straps’ anchor point, by starting your exercises further away from your anchor position your resistance will be bumped up as you try and fight those gravitational forces. If on the other hand you’re after more of a gentle workout, pulling down directly underneath the anchor point will be much less of a battle and should make your routine a whole lot easier.
Not without its wobble factor, purely because you’re using your own body weight against gravity, this type of training does require some impressive co-ordination skills, but after your initial session on the straps, your body balance techniques should have improved dramatically.
Advocates of suspension training believe that everybody can use suspension training to bulk up their body and improve their stamina. Others however, stress that it’s a more valuable exercise for regular gymgoers and athletes who are au fait with putting their core strength to the test. If you’re not an avid fitness fan, there’s more of a risk that you might use the wrong muscles to try and stabilise yourself, increasing your chances of injury.
The US Navy designed this type of training for its Sea, Air and Land (SEAL) forces to keep them trim.