As Sir Isaac Newton taught us, F=M*A, or Force equals mass times acceleration. In terms of exercise, Effort = Weight * Motion. Example: Standing is harder than sitting, since you add more resistance on your muscles; jogging is harder than walking because you are moving your muscles faster. The two main ways to improve your workout is to add more weight (resistance) or more motion (repetition). On the Power Step, the body weight is kept constant, and instead we focus on the motion side of the equation. As the plate shifts you out of balance, your body involuntary relaxes and contracts its muscles up to 50 times per second throughout your core, sides, thighs, and legs. By using the arms straps, we can target over 90% of the muscles in your body. Since we are going for more repetition, not more weight, you will tone and firm, slim and thin, losing inches throughout the body. Just 10 minutes on the Power Step will firm and tone as much as a 45 minute walk!!
Due to this subconscious contraction of the muscles, many more muscle fibers are used than in a conscious, voluntary movement (Issurin & Tenenbaum 1999 ). The immediate effect is therefore that the muscles can be used quickly and efficiently, rendering them capable of producing more force. Another immediate effect is an improvement of circulation. The rapid contraction and relaxation of the muscles up to 50 times per second basically works as a pump on the blood vessels and lymphatic vessels, increasing the speed of the blood flow through the body (Kerschan-Schindl et al 2001). Subjects often experience this as a tingling, prickling, warm sensation in the skin. Both Stewart (2005) and Oliveri (1989) describe the appearance of vasodilatation (widening of the blood vessels) as a result of vibration, meaning better flow with less restriction, which may even lower blood pressure. You’ll even feel lighter on your feet afterward.
Other than its influence on the muscles, the Power Step can also have a positive effect on bone mineral density. The vibrations cause compression and remodeling of the bone tissue, activating the osteoblasts (bone building cells), while reducing the activity of the osteoclasts (cells that break bone down). Repeated stimulation of this system, combined with the increased pull on the bones by the muscles, will increase bone mineral density over time. The improved circulation and increased supply of nutrients, are also contributing factors toward increased bone formation (Verschueren 2004 , Jordan 2005 , Olof Johnell & John Eisman, 2004). In preventing falls and the bone fractures that they often result in, enhancing bone mineral density is not the only important issue; increased muscle power, postural control and balance are also considerable factors. Studies involving elderly subjects have shown that all of these issues can be improved using whole body vibration (Roelants et al 2004 , Bautmans et al 2005 , Bogaerts et al 2007 , Kawanabe et al 2007 ).
Unlike any other exercise machine, you can do anything from just standing on the plate, up to a full body workout (replacing that trip to the gym). Since we are already providing more repetition than your body is capable of on its own, any extra weight you add becomes that much more effective. By focusing more weight on your arms for a push up (hands on vibration plate), not only can you build strength and muscle, our added repetitions will tone and firm at the same time!! Or for example, by adding 10 lb free-weights in each hand you are now forcing your body to balance and stabilize 20 extra pounds of resistance against the rapid muscle contractions generated by the Power Step. Five minutes of arm curls with free weights, followed by five minutes of squats with free weights has the same cardiovascular benefits of jogging for half an hour, but without any impact on your joints or ligaments. Plus you are getting a whole body massage while you exercise, meaning you won’t be as sore or as tired the next day.