We all know that the road to a well-toned physique is paved with healthy eating and exercise. Sometimes, however, a little extra help comes in handy. And if that help delivers results in record time… well, even better.
Enter power plates. These black, bulky machines can usually be found hiding at the corner of your local gym. Like me, you may have half-heartedly hopped onto one before. And, like me, you may have hopped off just as quickly, unconvinced that being shaken within an inch of your life actually achieves anything.
Finally deciding to find out what power plates can do when used properly, I went along to Good Vibes.
This cute little studio in Covent Garden (there’s also one in Fitzrovia) holds 25-minute power plate classes that will challenge even the fittest gym bunnies out there. In short, it’s a total body toning session – squats, leg lifts, chest presses etc. – performed while holding weights and standing on a vibrating plate. It sounds like a nightmare, but it’s surprisingly easy to follow and you will feel the burn… I promise.
Experts say that the vibrations from the plates can cause the body’s muscles to contract and relax 30 times a second instead of once or twice a second as is usually the case. This means that the toning effect of exercises, like squats and lunges, are supersized when done on a power plate… in theory, anyway.
It pains me to admit that my biggest challenge during the class was nausea (made worse by the fact that no one else in the class seemed to be experiencing my little problem). After tolerating the vibration for the first 10 minutes, the potential embarrassment to be had by throwing up during a fitness class drove me to jump off the machine.
It was at that point that the instructor explained that power plates are a no no for people who suffer from motion sickness.
Luckily, switching the power plate on only when doing seated exercises was enough to get rid of the nausea and I powered my way through a pretty challenging class.
But does it work on those flabby bits?
Regulars to the class told me they’ve definitely noticed a difference in their figures and swore that power plate workouts boost the effects compared to cardio alone.
Tempted to see what the fuss is all about? Power plate classes at Good Vibes are held every 30 minutes Monday to Friday. Prices vary depending on class bundle chosen e.g. £40 for 30 day unlimited classes including yoga and spinning.
Good Vibes (Covent Garden)
14-16 Betterton Street
Tel: 020 7240 6111
Good Vibes (Fitzrovia)
11 Tottenham Street