About Suspension Training. 

What is it?

This page is an introduction about Suspension Training, what is is, and where it come from. Suspension Training uses is a set a straps that can be anchored and allows you to lift or push amounts of your own body weight. A suspension trainer can be used anywhere. This includes the gym, to the park, to the pool deck, or within your own house (or hotel room). Suspension training requires the body to stabilize during each movement. Because of this, you end up using a lot more core. You also improve your balance and stability, and train your body to work as a unit.  It is portable, extremely versatile, lightweight and is great for traveling with as well.

Most movements in suspension training can be easily modified to suit a variety of fitness and ability levels.  Novice exercisers will appreciate joint-friendly and easily adjustable resistances. Those at advanced fitness levels will appreciate progressions and easy transitions between movements.  Athletes using suspension training notice significant gains in the performance of everyday activities as well as when cycling, running and swimming. If done correctly, suspension training can be one of the most efficient, functional, and effective ways to train the body in both solo and group settings.

Origins and development 

Suspension training is not new, but it has evolved and is now recognized as a valuable and useful tool. Gymnasts and trapeze artists perform aspects of their sports using suspension. If you have ever watched the rings competitions in gymnastics, that is a form of suspension training. Since the mid-1990s, a variety of suspension training systems have been commercially available to professional trainers and home users alike. The most popular and widely recognized system is the TRX Suspension Trainer.

The suspension exercises shown on this website can be practiced with a variety of suspension training brands, which are available at a range of price points.

Suspension training is appropriate for all ability levels

Suspension training makes bodyweight training accessible to a wide variety of abilities. This is because the resistance levels are so easy to adjust. When you are hanging on the straps, whatever percent of your bodyweight is being supported by the straps is what you will ultimately be working with.  This could be a very small percent, resulting in a very light load, all the way to the weight of your entire body.  This makes it an adaptable tool for people at different levels of strength conditioning,

Suspension training is functional 

The strength gained from suspension training will help in everyday activities as well as your chosen sport.  Every movement in suspension training requires the use of core muscles to stabilize or move the body. In addition, it works the body as a unit.  Too often when you go into a fitness center, you will see a line of machines all designed to work different parts of the body.  For example, you do a a bicep curl, triceps extension, chest press and leg extension as part of your circuit.  Most of these you are seated with a backrest so you can actually relax your core can focus on just the targeted muscle.

This is not how the body moves during everyday tasks.  You are missing out on the development of important motor patterns that go along with the acquired strength. In addition, you are not using your core to create a solid center of mass that your extremities can rely on to both transfer force and hold proper alignment when required to lift or move objects.   This is especially true when handling asymmetrical loads.  (For example, picking up a heavy bag of groceries, or a suitcase., or a small wiggling child).  Training your body in suspension better prepares you to handle the demands of your chosen active endeavors, and the physical demands of everyday living activities.

Suspension training is time-effective.

There is no traveling between machines with suspension training. It’s all right in front of you. Those who are pressed for time will appreciate the quick transition from one movement to the next without lag time.

For those whose objective is burning calories, this time efficiency gives you a lot of bang for you buck. You plan a workout that elevates your heart rate, burn more calories per unit of time, and replace some of the more traditional cardio activities. In addition, it can be much more dynamic and fun.   Because it is lightweight and packs up easily, it also easily goes with you on the road when traveling.

3 basic concepts of suspension training.

  • Uses gravity and your own body weight as resistance.
  • Your body position and amount of lean determine how much weight you are loading onto the straps(the weight you are lifting and controlling during the exercise)
  • The difficulty level of an exercises can easily and quickly be modified(even mid set!) to fit a variety of fitness levels.

Below are examples of four movements(a push, pull, leg and core) that can be performed on a suspension trainer.  Check out the Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced Suspension Training workouts with video, to get an even better idea of how this training tool works! 

———————————————————–

Summary

In Summary, suspension training brings back the concept of moving your body-weight to become stronger, more stable and more flexible.  It is a concept that is older and more functional than the high-end, expensive machines you can find in many fitness centers which force you to work the parts of your body as independent units.  Suspension Training trains the units of your body to work together, the way they were designed to work. The suspension products available on the market to the public today makes this type of training affordable and convenient.

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter

Has this information been helpful to you? If so, considering purchasing the Complete Suspension Fitness Book or the Suspension Fitness for Beginners. It is available in both hard copy and Kindle. I believe strongly that these tools and methods can help you obtain better health, greater fitness and more enjoyment in your chosen activities and endeavors.  All the information, workouts, and videos on this site are free. If you found value in this site, please consider donating a few bucks to help me maintain and add new content. I am just one individual running this and my only sponsors are you guys.  Feel free to contact me directly with any questions, feedback or thoughts at tracy@suspensionfitnessandbeyond.com. Thank you for reading!