Starting to Understand Frequency, Displacement and G-Force
I mentioned how I don’t like reading ‘technical instructions’ or assembling machines? Well I don’t like reading articles that I feel are trying to confuse me rather than inform me. So I must admit my eyes glaze over when I read about veritable frequencies, G Force, amplitude displacement…
But the page I was reading was talking about the researchers getting confused! Heck, no wonder I was having trouble. Apparently, when researchers tried to duplicate the results that some machines claimed, they could not successfully get the same information. Puzzled, they wondered why. It turned out that the machines were not performing at the levels they were supposed to perform at. And here is where the article caught my attention! They compared the discrepancy to barbells. The example was perfect for my learning curve.
Basically, the point was made that if you begin an exercise program using 5-pound dumbbells, you expect certain results. You do your work out regularly but eventually come to a point where you wonder why this workout is just not doing what it should. Confused, you have an idea that something might be wrong. You actually take the dumbbell to your scale and find that the 5-pound weight is a fraud – it is only a 2-pound weight. No wonder the results were not as effective as you anticipated.
So back to the whole body vibration machines that were not bringing about the results that were expected…were the promises made for each machine actually accurate? This interested me since I had achieved some results but then reached a plateau – and that meant I was not going to achieve the results I had expected.
I downloaded a Report that gave me an overview of a study that compared 18 Whole Body Vibration Machines through extensive testing to determine if performance claimed by the manufacturer actually matched the output recorded by the independent testing.
With nervous fingers I scrolled through to see which machines were part of the study. There were two T-Zone models along with 16 others. I recognized some of the names as products I had recently been reading about.
The summary showed graphs comparing Frequency, Displacement and G-Force. I was going to have to get a good understanding of those terms after all!
Frequency is how fast the plate you stand on goes up and down. Pretty basic. And the displacement is the distance or how far the plate goes up and down. Speed and distance.
Together, frequency and displacement control the level of G-force or the load on the muscles generated by the machine’s movement. “Consumers who want to stimulate their muscles, circulation and bone density would benefit from knowing which machines offered the most G-Force, and research indicates that low G-force vibration may not provide enough load to achieve similar improvements, particularly in men.”
Well as a woman, I WANTED to stimulate my “muscles, circulation and bone density”. I had seen reference to machines taking a person“ up to 17 times the earth’s gravity…” Now I was going to finally understand what that claim meant.
I understand that for any exercise to be effective, you have to stimulate muscles to stretch and contract; and you have to make your muscles work harder than normal – you have to increase the load on your muscles – to see any results.
I read that often manufacturers did not specify the maximum G-Force of their machines but instead only reported the frequency and displacement. I was beginning to understand that I really wanted to know about G-force. It seemed to me that if the G-Force was not there, my muscles were not going to be forced to work as hard as they needed to and I would never get the results I wanted.
If you haven’t already read it, you can download the summary of the Engineer’s Report You can read the results too: 10 out of 18 machines had maximum G-Force of under 4.5. One of them was my machine. Then I could not believe what I was reading. One machine, that I knew was marketed to the general public, had a G-Force of 23.97. How could I possibly get the results I wanted from a model that scored 4.38 on maximum G-force when I could be using one that scored over 23?
Sometimes a learning curve is hard to take!
Til next time.