If you have ever looked in the mirror and been confronted with an expanding “beer boep” that confirms your losing battle with middle age, or if you find it easier to watch TV, rather than climb the stairs to retrieve a book, then it is likely that poor eating habits and lack of exercise are at the root of your distressing appearance or lack of fitness. Like most people, you will be aware that there is a remedy, but along with that majority, you will have some excuse for not pursuing it or, alternatively, you may have attempted the solution but failed.
Traditionally, the key to fitness has been to eat wisely and to get all of the exercise one can. In certain more physical occupations, fitness tends to be an automatic by-product of the job, and thus any excess flab can probably be attributed to a diet composed mainly of burgers and fries. Today, however, more South Africans than ever before are finding themselves in jobs that are predominately sedentary. In addition, their time constraints are serving to encourage their dependence upon fast foods when busy in the office, and TV dinners as a means to allow more time for relaxation when at home.
While many of those affected now resort to jogging or perhaps head for the nearest gym to sign up, jogging may aid cardiovascular performance, but impact carries the risk of shin splints, and physical exercise is both painful and slow to deliver results. For the gym group, however, a new and highly effective option known as an EMS machine now offers a more effective, faster and less physically demanding alternative to the conventional methods employing the weights and varied types of resistance-based apparatus found in conventional gyms.
These devices are a new arrival in the public domain, but have long been used by sports doctors to rehabilitate injured athletes and later, by professional athletes for their personal fitness and strength training. The three-letter acronym stands for electro-muscular stimulation, as an EMS machine delivers a pulsed electrical current to a chosen muscle group via electrodes attached to the skin above. The effect is to induce muscular contractions identical to those that occur during exercise, only at a rate more than 150 times faster than during voluntary muscular activity. Exercises may be performed with or without the aid of weights and in the latter case, require no actual physical effort by the trainee.
Each participant follows a personalised programme that is based on his or her current fitness and specific need, which may be toning, bulking, weight loss, cellulite reduction, or recovery following an injury. Under the control of a qualified trainer, an EMS machine then delivers the electrical charges to the selected target areas at the frequency and current best suited to the subject’s goal.
Because of the intensity of these treatments, their goals are achieved far more quickly than by conventional exercise, allowing a weekly session of just 20 minutes to achieve results within just a few weeks. Used in Body20 studios across South Africa, this innovative option debunks the belief that all worthwhile gain must involve pain, and could be the very first fitness solution that actually works for you.