This week I have done Google searches for the effect of vibration training on slimming and weight (fat) loss and found hundreds of responses from all sorts of different companies promising slimming miracles if you go to their gym and stand on this platform for 10 minutes. Claims such as these are some of the promises made:
Helps Reduce Cellulite
Clears Lymph glands
Exercises & Oxygenates the entire body
Slims, Tones, and increases flexibility
Stimulates Human Growth Hormones
Feels Wonderful, Like a Deep Massage
Stimulates Serotonin (Happy Hormone)
Gently re-aligns organs
Clears Lymph glands
But no-one ever backs up their claims with results.((Lets look at the evidence for vibration and slimming. Well as far as I can see there are only two studies that have examined the effects of whole body vibration training and fat loss, and the results are contradictory. The first study was conducted in non-active females. This study compared whole body vibration with conventional training and found vibration to be slightly superior in terms of strength. There was also a slight increase lean mass (fat-free mass) with the vibration training. But there was no effects of any of the training on fat loss (which is a little strange and needs repeating I think). The other study was conducted in physically active men and compared squatting with and without vibration. The results from this suggest that adding vibration did increase the energy demand of the exercise, which seems reasonable to me as recruitment muscle patterns would change and efficiency would be reduced with vibration.
So far we have discussed the potential benefits of whole body vibration on slimming, but vibration has been applied to the respiratory system also, and preliminary results suggest that youbreathe reduces cortisol and increases growth hormone. Further studies are underway to examine these effects as they could promote fat loss.
So, vibration does look to have potential for slimming, but the studies have not been done properly or in enough volume to draw conclusions. I hope we can change this at London South Bank where we are now investigating the physics, biomechanics, physiology and neuroscience of whole body and targeted vibration training.(Of course the key to slimming and fat loss is increasing metabolic rate and controlling diet. Now if vibration training helps users to keep going to the gym then that can only be a good thing.