How TRX works, what are the benefits and how to tone the body with suspension training
- How does it work
- Three examples of exercises
- How often to practice TRX
How does it work
Also known as suspension training, the TRX was developed by Randy Hetrick, a member of the US Navy special forces. It was he who developed the equipment or the handles that are used to hang at different angles, based on the different support of the feet and the management of the mass. A real movement craftsman who created the first prototype of TRX with a jiu jitsu belt and a parachute net. TRX stands for Total Resistance eXercise and in the course of time its inventor, together with a team of experts, has developed programs that diversify according to the objectives.
The TRX turns out to be a wonderful tool due to its adaptability, it can be mounted anywhere: at home, in the gym and even outdoors. In many cases the military just hung it on machines or pipes or tanks. To calculate the space it is sufficient to consider that in depth and width there must be a free space of 2.50 m x 1.80 m and that it must be fixed between 2.10 m and 2.80 m in height. To secure it, crossbars, cable linings, external or internal supports, fasteners for punching bags, railings, trees, stable fences are fine.
Training allows you to develop strength and endurance starting from 3 fundamental principles: the angle principle (moving the body to different positions while hanging) increases the intense work load; the principle of stability, because being balanced on one leg means training and getting to know each other better and adding hops or lunges increases the level of complexity. Ultimately, the TRX is based on the pendulum principle: swinging you train with a gradual increase in difficulty, moving away from the fixation, the swing increases and must be managed with all the muscles of the body and constantly coordinated.
Suspension training creates significant changes in the body and in its perception. It increases stability, the perception of the center of gravity, the ability to manage one's movements starting from the abdominal center. The extremities become strong, both the lower and upper ones. Increase muscle mass, flexibility, strength and endurance. This type of training is also excellent in the case of postural problems or post trauma or injury.
Suspension training also allows you to burn calories and lose weight gradually. This type of training is also appreciated by women as it does not lead to hypertrophy of the muscles, but it helps to manage dexterity, agility and improves alertness. Great benefits are obtained at the level of posture, as much of the work is in the use of the stabilizing muscles of the trunk. This also means protecting the back and strengthening the deep abdominal muscle or the transversus. In this way, the risk of injury to the spine and the entire musculoskeletal system decreases. The hips, back and buttocks are reshaped, as well as the shoulders, arms and muscles near the spine.
One last benefit goes to… bank account! The TRX does not have a high price, especially compared to many machines. With a relatively low cost it is possible to obtain a versatile and truly effective tool that lasts over time.
Three examples of exercises
The beauty of suspension training lies in the fact that the degrees can increase depending on the results you want to achieve. Here we propose three simple and basic exercises:
Reverse lunge – First level
You hold the TRX and take a step back with one leg touching the ground with the knee and then return to the starting position using the strength of the arms with the help of the arms. To do this exercise, the legs collaborate with the abdominal center, the square of the loins. The posture and trunk are strong and stable. It should be performed with a long and deep breath.
First and Second level of the Plank
The figure in space corresponds to that of the classic plank, that is, from the quadruped we move to the position on the table, wrists in line with the shoulders, buttocks active. In the TRX, the planks fit into the handlebars. Going to Level 2 means that the version in which the difficulty increases, since, keeping the center stable, one hand alternately brings one hand towards the opposite shoulder and vice versa. Doing the plank with the touch of the shoulders really means getting in touch with the strength of your abdominal core.
The handles have to be grasped leaving them with a soft hold. With the elbows bent at 90 ° you have to go down as if you wanted to sit down, with the weight remaining on the heels. By contracting the buttocks, you go up. The knees do not go beyond the big toe and do not go in as you go up. The shoulders must be well aligned with the trunk and should not be brought close to the ears.
How often to practice TRX
How long to try the exercises? Certainly using the TRX well requires a gradual approach so that the exercises become familiar. You can try doing each exercise for 30 seconds, rest for one minute and then do the circuit again for 45 seconds each exercise (or go up to 50 seconds), rest for one minute, and repeat the circuit for 60 seconds each exercise.
The movements must be studied well, to avoid tearing or injuries or joint problems as the body moves almost completely freely and the focus could tend to the handles and move away from the abdominal center, which is not convenient. The best thing would be to rely on a personal trainer and follow a program to make the exercises really familiar and then do them independently.
The approach must be gradual, especially if it comes from a long period of inactivity. The training could be done 2-3 times a week, and then increase the frequency and reach up to 4 times a week, varying the use according to the muscle groups that you want to train.