I was chatting online with a good friend of mine from Greece last week, and he was telling me about how he had started using this contraption called the “Powerplate,” that runs anywhere from $2,500 to $10,000, depending on the model. Now, he told me that all he had to do was use the device for 10 minutes a day, every 3 days. He tells me that the workouts make him sore and he has started noticing changes in his appearance. My friend, who I will refer to as Salonica, served in the Greek military, and had always kept up swimming since I first met him. So, he was by no means starting from a low base of fitness.
I am, of course, very skeptical of this thing. I do see some merits in a machine like this, however. I do certain exercises on a swiss ball where I try to get up on my haunches and balance on the ball, and eventually stand straight up, the whole time keeping my body stabilized and moving contrary to the direction the ball starts moving. However, anything that sells itself as a 10 minute workout and nothing more belongs in the garbage, in my opinion. It kind of reminds me of that Christie Brinkley/Chuck Norris infomercial for the “Total Gym,” for no other reason than they say that the “Total Gym” is for people who do not like to go to the gym or workout. Not for me, no thanks.
If there were a magical pill that I could take that would suddenly leave me in incredible shape, I would still put in the time and effort to get into that much better shape. Sure, one of the reasons why I lift or run or swim is because I want to look good, but that is only a small part of it. I enjoy the challenge, I enjoy setting goals, and I enjoy working my tail off to reach those goals. There is a large amount of satisfaction that I derive from doing this, and I would imagine, most other Fit Fiends are the same way.
Still, I understand that people have different goals, and many people also do not have the time or desire put in an effort of more than 10 minutes a few days of the week. Also, I am curious if my friend, Salonica, really gets much of a cardiovascular workout using that machine. Maybe he doesn’t want or need one. Again, that speaks to his personal objectives.
Call me an old fuddy duddy, or whatever you want when it comes to sweating out a good workout, but I still subscribe to the “no pain, no gain” school of training.