For many of us, the term vibration therapy conjures up images of the wildly popular belt machines of the 1950s that were purported to jiggle away the fat. Not so. Today’s vibration technology is sophisticated and science-based. Best of all, it is helping athletes around the world reach peak performance. To help you understand where vibration therapy came from, how it is used, and whether or not it might be right for you, we’ve answered some of the more common questions we hear about this promising therapy.
Where did Vibration Therapy Start?
During the 1800s, Russian scientists began experimenting with vibration as a means of therapeutic practice. They continuously developed their idea through the “Race to the Moon” years, discovering that vibrating technology stimulated bone growth and muscle. Russian Olympians used the therapy in the 1980s, and even today it is used by NASA.
Since the birth of vibration therapy in Russia, scientists all over the world have tried using this useful tool to improve movement. While several scientists have developed their own types of the vibrating machine, it was John Kellogg who invented the first full body vibration machine. Kellogg’s invention evolved into the vibration machines we use today.
What does Vibration Therapy Accomplish?
As the name suggests, this therapy uses vibrations created from sound waves, to treat muscle pain and stiffness. Scientists believe that the vibrations help improve blood circulation and prevent bone density loss. Users of vibration therapy remark that it helps reduce their joint and back pain. Some even say that it helps to alleviate their stress as well.
Vibration therapy’s simple science makes these accomplishments possible. It begins with vibrations transmitting through the body, causing the muscles to contract and relax. This contraction and relaxation simulate the movement of muscles during exercise. The vibrations also give the sense that the bones are receiving positive stimulations. In doing this, the bones then create osteoblasts (the building blocks of the bone) to promote good bone density.
What Variations of Vibration Therapy are Available?
There are two types of vibration therapy: whole-body vibration and localized vibration therapy. With whole-body vibration, you stand, sit, or lay on a machine with a vibrating platform. Science shows that whole-body vibration may be effective for preventing post-workout soreness, but according to the Journal of Athletic Training, more research is to confirm this benefit.
Localized vibration therapy uses the same techniques as whole-body vibrations. However, with specific muscles that you want to relax or strengthen are targeted. Local vibration tools may have more options for frequency and type of vibration to the muscles.
Where can I find this type of Therapy?
Whole-body vibration is offered as a treatment for balance issues and back pains in health spas, physical therapy offices, and gyms which have vibration plates.
2Peform Fitness has the PowerPlate®. We utilize vibration therapy during warmups and cooldowns with our personal training clients. We also utilize the PowerPlate® after small group circuit classes to relax the body. 2Perform clients who have used the vibration therapy have said great things about it; some even voluntarily ask to use the vibration plate because of its tremendous benefits.
2Perform Fitness offers the latest in exercise technology including state-of-the-art ARX training tools. We are among the few studios in the Dallas area to offer PowerPlate® vibration technology. Why not take advantage of a free trial to see what our McKinney, Texas fitness studio and find out how 2Perform can help you meet and beat your fitness goals?