Hi I’m Dr. David McLeod and I’m an avid user of the whole body vibration system. I also own a weight loss clinic with eight vibration machines that we use daily. I have a variety of patients. Some come to my clinic to lose weight. Some have osteoporosis concerns. Others are looking for a machine that can offer them a healthy life as they have not exercised in a very long time.
I’ve seen vibration machines help people lose weight tone their bodies increase the circulation boost their hormone levels rebuild bone density and so much more.
There are different types of machines many different brands and many different prices. It can be quite confusing for most shoppers. Well I’m here to clarify some of those issues for you.
There are different types of vibration machines classified as level 1, level 2 and level 3. Let’s review together the differences between the machines and see how one is more suited to help you reach your personal goals.
A Brief Whole Body Vibration Machine Buyer’s Guide
Level 1 machines are primarily used for weight loss and have limited effectiveness on bone density or toning.
Level 2 units are used more for strength training.
Level 3 machines are multi movement machines that offer all the benefits of level 1 and level 2 machines so let’s more closely examine the differences between the level 1, level 2 and level 3 machines.
Level 1 WBV Machines
The most common type of machine is a level 1 machine also referred to as the oscillating machine. You will notice as one side of the platform goes up the other goes down just like a seesaw in motion. This movement closely resembles walking. The platforms on these machines move slower than on level 2 machines and this level one machine platform was farther than on a level 2 machine. That’s really the big difference between the level 1 and level 2 machines.
The main characteristics of the oscillating machine are the low speeds and the high range of motion. The concept behind the differences in motion on a level 1 or level 2 machine equates to the fact that when the body experiences a larger range of motion at lower speeds the muscles respond in a way that is ideal for weight loss. On an oscillating machine the amount of a platoon or how far the plate moves under your feet is determined by your stance. The wider your feet are apart the more the amplitude. The closer your feet are together the lesser the distance traveled.
The only factor you can alter on the control panel is the speed of the machine. If you want to lose weight, then a machine like this level one unit would be the perfect choice for weight loss. A level 2 machine would not be a good choice.
Level 2 WBV Machines
This brings us to level 2 machines also called tri planar machines because a platform moves in three different planes or directions. The platform moves up down left right and front and back at the same time. Level two machines move much faster than oscillating machines but the distance they move is much less. Typically, they will only move two to four millimeters compared to the 10 or 11 millimeters of motion on an oscillating machine. The speed of course is also adjustable but keep in mind that most tri planar machines lowest speeds are already higher than most oscillating machines highest speeds and definitely their maximum speed is considerably faster than the oscillating machines.
It’s that unique combination of very high speed and low amplitude that are so effective in strength training. That’s something the level 1 machines do not have. They’re exactly opposite low speed and high amplitude the exact opposite characteristics this short amplitude combined with higher speed are great for building bone density, improving blood circulation and especially good for building muscle strength. Even though oscillating machines offer a little of the same benefits try planers are far better for these specific purposes so for strength training goals you want a tri planar style machine.
Level 2 machines typically also have upper body straps that are rigid. Different from the flexible bungee cord style seen on the oscillate level one machines. The solid straps from level two machines are used to transfer the vibrations to the user’s arms shoulders and back area. Conversely level one machine straps are used as resistance bands to increase caloric burn when using the machines.
Now let’s talk about price. Most level two machines are more expensive than typical level 1 machines. You can purchase a good level 2 machine for between $2,500 and $3,500. Level 1 machines on the other hand are $1,200 to 2200 dollars and you really shouldn’t pay more than that for a level 1 machine. That kind of sums up the differences between our level 1 machines and our two machines.
Level 3 WBV Machines
Which brings us to our level 3 machines. These machines have two motors and two separate drive systems. They create three different motion styles using one drive the other drive or combining both drives at the same time it’s like combining a level one machine a level two machine into one physical unit. These are the newest most sophisticated whole-body vibration machines available.
They were developed after thoroughly reviewing all the research developed on level 1 and level 2 machines. This unique design has resulted in twice the amount of muscles being used and twice a caloric burn compared to single motion machines so they’re great for weight loss purposes
Let’s take a closer look at what these level three machines can do and how they can do it. Users can simply turn a dial and go into the oscillating mode just like a level 1 machine or turn another dial and go into the low amplitude mode. This particular motion is called spiral rotational motion as a platform is now moving left, right and front and back very similar to a triplanar motion. The vertical movement of this is a really important difference because the vertical lift on a triplanar machine is what can cause impact damage to joints. In this spiral rotational low amplitude mode a person utilizes many different muscles than if they were using just an oscillating machine. A user can now receive the benefits of strength training like on a triplaner without any concerns about the impact damage to their joints.
On a level 3 machine the user can also combine both motions and in turn recreate the triplanar machines motion if desired, again without the impact damage. These level 3 machines of course come equipped with upper body straps like the other types of machines, but these dual motion level 3 units come equipped with both soft straps like those found in oscillating machines and the firm straps found on triplanar units.
This Genesis level 3 dual motion machine for example is built much tougher than the level 1 machines as they were originally designed for commercial use in gyms and studios. They’ve quickly gained popularity in commercial locations because the owners of these locations can now have just one machine that serves the needs of all their clients instead of having two different machines
The commercial rating build quality and having two motors instead of one makes these level 3 machines a little more expensive than the level ones. You should expect to pay around 3,000 to 4,000 dollars for a good quality level 3 machine. They are still cheaper than the level 2 machines which make them the perfect buy for families with multiple users in the household with different needs. Previously these buyers would be looking at getting two separate machines.
Well that about sums up the differences between our levels 1, 2 & 3 machines. So, remember when you are choosing which machine to buy you should really review what your needs our goals are first, so you can select the right type or level of machine.
So, if your main goals are weight loss and toning then you should be looking at a level 1 or level 3 machine. Unfortunately, the level 1 machines will not give you much help in building strength, so you may not have enough strength to finish a proper 10-minute weight loss program. You really need to add strength training to your workout so a machine that only has an oscillating motion like any level one machine may not be suited for you. A level 3 machine can actually increase the effectiveness of a weight-loss program by as much as 90%. That’s a big difference meaning you will see results quicker and easier plus you will actually be making the muscle stronger which in turn makes them burn more calories. This makes it easier to keep the weight off. So, if your main goal is weight loss then a level 3 machine is definitely the right choice
If you are only looking to build strength or have serious osteoporosis concerns, then a level 2 machine is a much better choice than a level 1. However, the level 2 machines are not great at increasing lymphatic drainage due to the short low amplitude movement they produce. It is better to have a machine that can help with lymphatic movement it is a great way to rid the body of built-up toxins. So, a level 3 machine is a better choice.
If you have a commercial location like a wellness center or gym, then your choice becomes even more clear. A level 3 machine is your best choice since it can serve all the different needs of your clients in one sturdy reliable unit. You will have clients coming in looking for the most effective fastest way to lose weight and the effectiveness of a level 3 machine for this purpose cannot be beat.
Well thanks for spending some time with me. I hope I was able to give you some good advice and point you in the right direction but more importantly I hope you spend the time to find the right machine for you.