Frequently asked questions
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How long has Vibration Training been around for?
The first implementations of vibration to improve human performance go back as far as ancient Greece, where physicians used saws covered in cotton to transfer vibrations to those body parts that needed stimulation.
The most simple manufactured vibration tools were developed in Germany, delivering a highvariable frequency that resembled vibration, if cranked fast enough. Actual vibration delivered in more than one direction was not developed until the middle of the 19th century, when physicians began to use machines that produced both up-and-down and circular movements to treat disorders as diverse as neuralgia, atrophy, emaciation, and constipation.
In the late 19th century, several specialists began to develop steam-powered machines that could deliver either percussion or vibration to up to five people at the same time. One example was the device invented by John Harvey Kellogg, M.D., at the Battle Creek Sanitarium, which he incorporated in his holistic treatment methods. In Sweden, Gustav Zander, M.D., rose to fame at the end of the 19th century because of his applications of steam-powered massage machines.
Professor W. Biermann was one of the first modern scientists to realize the potential of vibration – he studied “cycloid vibrations” and the “Rhythmic Neuromuscular Stimulation Method,” the foundations of today’s acceleration technology.
Acceleration Training™ was used and researched in the former Soviet Union during the 1960’s to enable cosmonauts to withstand the negative effects of microgravity while engaged in space flight, and this implantation of vibration may have been responsible for the cosmonauts staggering record of 420 days in space, compared to American astronauts returning home after 120 days.
After space missions, the cosmonauts had previously suffered severe loss of strength and bone density, and this training method appeared to mitigate the negative effects suffered, helping them to recover quickly.
In later years, vibration science was studied extensively and the results showed benefits for muscular strength, flexibility, power, bone density, circulation, and recovery. The West was still in the dark about this training method until the fall of the Iron Curtain in 1989, when the Dutch Olympic coach Guus van der Meer was one of the first people to recognize the potential of this technology. The paradigm shift to this method of training offered the possibility of optimizing human function naturally, using the body’s own resources, while preserving joint health and maximizing power. The use of this technology stimulates the body’s reflex neuromuscular activation to promote strength benefits without requiring heavy loads. For the elite training and therapeutic community, vibration opened the potential for human performance and exercise physiology to reach new levels of accomplishment. Using his experience in training athletes and listening to the wants and needs of “average” people who are aware of the need to exercise, but are not willing to devote a lot of time and effort to training, Guus van der Meer then went on to develop Acceleration Training™ - to make it accessible to as many people as possible, resulting in the world-wide success of the Power Plate® equipment.
Because WBV training provides 30% faster results at a fraction of the time generally spent on traditional health club equipment. Since the exercises are considered functional then results are even better than from regular equipment found in the larger glitzy health clubs.
Will I lose weight when I train on the Power Plate® machine?
Depending on how fit you are, the Power Plate® workout can contribute to a lesser or greater degree to a
loss of fatty tissue in your body. The Power Plate® device has such an influence on some of the essential
processes involved, it can, in fact, aid weight loss. As with any other activity, however, you will also have
to pay attention to your calorie intake. Because the division between fatty tissue and muscles are positively
influenced, training on the Power Plate® device will speed up the basic metabolism, leading to higher
energy consumption. In short, if the energy intake is constant and its consumption rises, logically a negative
energy balance will be the result. In other words, you will decrease the amount of fatty tissue. However, this
decrease does not correspond directly to your weight, as muscle tissue is heavier than fatty tissue.
Many of the processes in our body, among others burning calories, are regulated by hormones. These
hormones are effectors, in other words, they can start a process in the body, speed it up or slow it down
as necessary. If you train on Power Plate® equipment, your body will be stimulated to produce all kinds
of hormones involved in the recuperation processes, which have a significant influence on reducing fatty
tissues, such as the Human Growth Hormone. All of these factors can bring about a considerable reduction
of fatty tissue, if combined with a program of the proper intensity.
The Power Plate has been very successful at helping our clients reverse the effects of this menacing condition. We have experienced an average of 3-9% increases in bone mineral density after 12 months of training.
Does Power Plate® training improve flexibility?
Using Power Plate® machines increases flexibility in many different tissues, including the joints. To explain
this phenomenon, the Janda Stretch method is helpful. In this method, the muscle is tensed and then
stretched (contract-relax method). Training flexibility on the Power Plate® machine is based on this Janda
method. All muscles and joints that are stretched during the training are fully mobilized. The vibration also
loosens adhesions, which positively influences flexibility even more.
By using the Power Plate® machine in different positions (as shown on our training-poster), it is possible to
stretch different muscles, which will relax after stepping off the plate. The Golgi apparatus is also activated
during training, which promotes a high measure of relaxation (tendon-reflex). An extra advantage is that
muscles are lengthened in a functional and active position, while not decreasing explosive muscle strength.
If I quit training after having used the Power Plate® intensively for a number of weeks, how long will the effects last?
As with all other kinds of training, the results achieved will disappear in time once you stop stimulating the
body. This is caused by the biological law known as reversibility, meaning that the human body strives for
a balance in all things. For example, if you break your arm, muscle strength will begin decrease within 24
hours after immobilization. This principle is applicable for many physiological processes. If you reduce or
even stop using the Power Plate® machine after having trained intensively, the effects will slowly recede.
However, the speed of this recession is highly individual, and depends on a number of other factors as well.
Are there any negative effects connected to Vibration Training?
The effects of vibration on the human body have been researched for many years. No negative effects have
been found at all, providing the Power Plate® is used according to our instructions and advice, and under
proper supervision. Certain principles will have to be adhered to, such as responsible and safe use of the
machine, and consultancy of a doctor prior to using the Power Plate® device, if any contra-indications are
involved. However, a vast number of enthusiastic users of the Power Plate® equipment, many of whom are
using Acceleration Training™ to combat the effects of different disorders or to speed up recovery after
injury, can testify to the comprehensive range of positive effects.
Can I use the Power Plate® machine barefoot?
To use the Power Plate® equipment responsibly, first and foremost you have to ensure that the vibrations can be correctly transferred to the body – established contact between two hard surfaces causes friction.
Compared to soft tissue, hard tissue cannot absorb vibrations as well. The idea is to integrate with the plate so that there is no friction between the body and the vibrating surface. This will be easier to achieve while wearing shoes with flexible soles that are not too thick. The shoes need not be training shoes, although we do recommend it. If you would nevertheless rather train barefoot, or when you are performing exercises
where another part of the body is in direct contact with the Power Plate® platform, please make use of the rubber mat supplied.
If I don’t feel anything during and after Power Plate® training, does that mean I’m not performing the exercises correctly?
In all kinds of exercises we are dealing with the so-called super compensation phenomenon. The training stimulus should be strong enough to generate a physical effect. Therefore, if the exercises are not
strenuous, you will need to adapt the circumstances and increase the stimulus by intensifying your training
schedule. You should always try to achieve the maximum result and have feel some level of fatigue or
exertion of the muscles after each training session.
How does the Power Plate® machine cause muscles to contract automatically?
The physiological principle behind the stimulation of muscles is extremely complicated. A slightly simplified explanation follows: due to the mechanical vibration produced by the Power Plate® device, the body will react involuntarily. While standing on the Power Plate® machine, the natural balance in the human body is disturbed, thus numerous muscles are activated in order to recover the balance lost. By changing the angles of the joints and the position on the Power Plate® platform, the muscles around the joint involved will stretch. This stretching is registered by the muscle spindles.
These spindles are specialized muscle structures that send information about the muscle to the central nervous system. The signals received by the brain react with signals through the spinal cord and cause a reflex contraction of the muscles involved.
The change of position is thus countered as soon as possible.
Why do I sometimes get headaches immediately after a training session?
If you use the machine according to our instructions and are not suffering from any type of migraine,
headaches are normally caused by not having taken enough fluids containing glucose prior to the training.
Scientific research has shown that almost 70 % of the population is suffering from dehydration, as a result
of drinking coffee and alcohol, smoking, stress, and not drinking enough water. This means that a lot of
people do not have enough fluids in their bodies. Over 50 % of our bodies consist of water, which is why
the fluid balance is of the utmost importance. This is augmented by diets, where people are encouraged
to eat less, which will decrease the amount of fluids taken in even further. This group should in fact drink a
lot more water. Training on the Power Plate® device, which causes an enormous activation of the lymphatic
system, will result in a loss of body fluids. Therefore, we advise people to consume at least 300 ml of fluids
before training. Acceleration Training™ also causes the blood glucose level to drop. Because many people
have bad eating habits and skip meals, they often already have a low blood glucose level. This may lead
to hypoglycemia (an abnormal diminished concentration of blood glucose). However, we do point out that
identical complaints will occur while undertaking any kind of intensive training, and not a problem specifically
related to Acceleration Training™.
Should I do cardio-training as well as work out on Power Plate® machines?
In principle, you could exchange your cardio training for the Power Plate® schedule, but only if you were to
perform all of the exercises dynamically and have little or no rest in between. Acceleration Training™ will
attain many of the effects you are developing in cardio-training. If you are an athlete using the Power Plate®
workout as a part of, or in preparation for your regular training, it is advisable to integrate cardio-respiratory
training in a complete program. In that way, the Power Plate® work out will work as a catalyst and enhance
the effect of the cardio-respiratory stimulation enormously.
Should I complete Power Plate® exercises before or after my cardio training?
You can integrate Power Plate® training anywhere in your exercise schedule. Some people prefer to start
with weight training, followed by cardio-training, and then on to the massage-exercises on the Power Plate®
machine. However, you can adapt the schedule according to your own preferences. Perform the most
demanding and fatiguing training component first. Normally this is your Power Plate® component. If you
are doing high intensity intervals in your cardio component, then do that before you do your Power Plate®
How old should I be to start training on the Power Plate® machines?
If you will be training with a physiotherapist or a certified Power Plate® instructor, the minimum
recommended age to commence the work out is 12 years. Obviously, frequency, position and duration of
the training will have to be adapted to the specific person concerned. All exercises should be performed in
“low” mode/frequency. Young people can profit from the numerous benefits of Acceleration Training™ as
much as any other age group.
Is there a maximum age for training on the Power Plate® machine?
One of the first applications of the Power Plate® device was in combat of the effects of Osteoporosis.
The vibrations and different forces affecting the body during a Power Plate® session stimulate the bone
tissue, mainly because of the greater force that stronger muscles exert on the bones. In published studies
performed by several universities, research has shown that the vibrations themselves cause the increase
in bone mineral density. When muscles are reinforced, the bone structure is adjusted and the production
of bone cells is stimulated. It follows that for elderly people, the Power Plate® workout is a great aid for
keeping their muscles active in an easy, safe, and simple manner, without having to use external weights,
dumbbells, or dynabands. There is also a lot less strain put on the joints, ligatures, and tendons during
Acceleration Training™ than with conventional weight training. All of the visible results achieved by young
people are attainable for the elderly as well.
I have been exercising intensively for years. Can I start training on the Power Plate® device with the advanced program immediately?
Even for a very well trained athlete, acceleration exercises are an unconventional form of training. As with
any type of sports or physical exertion, you will have to allow your body to get used to a workout that
will progressively intensify. It is very important to create a tailor-made training schedule by which you can
increase the number of exercises, the duration and, of course, the intensity of the training quicker than an
untrained person. However, the Power Plate® training can always be an exertion. You will have to stimulate
your body constantly by increasing the intensity of the training or the efficiency of your workout will diminish
My doctor/specialist is not familiar with Power Plate® machines – what should I do?
POWER PLATE INTERNATIONAL organizes practical and theoretical presentations and demonstrations
of Power Plate® equipment, where doctors, physiotherapists and other specialists are very welcome.
Internationally, Acceleration Training™ is gaining vast acceptance and familiarity within the medical sphere
due to ever emerging scientific backup and research studies. The knowledge on the many applications of
Acceleration Training™ is growing rapidly, not only in the world of fitness and health, but also in the area of
medical and paramedical care. If your doctor, specialist or physical therapist would like to know more about
the Power Plate® technology and its possible applications, please ask him or her to check our website,
You will begin to notice that you feel differently within the first six sessions. Actual measurable results are dependent on how committed you are to your fitness goals, your age, nutrition, sleep patterns and stress levels also affect results. Generally speaking, it takes your body about 30 - 45 days to process and adapt to any significant changes in your lifestyle.
Bring a towel and water bottle, as we strongly encourage drinking a lot of fluids. Acceleration training increases circulation and flushes toxins as part of the process.
Will I perspire during my training session?
A Power Plate® work out is intensive and quite taxing, and you will certainly perspire – albeit not as heavily
as during an intensive cardiovascular program – especially when you expand the number of exercises or
shorten the period of rest in between. You are physically exerting yourself, causing an increase in body
temperature and metabolism, which will cause perspiration. The extent of exertion obviously depends on
the program you perform – massage, relaxation or stretch exercises will most likely not make you perspire
You will be most comfortable in exercise clothes, especially for stretching and massage. However, if you are time constrained, you can workout in your street clothes. We only permit exercise shoes to workout in. I find the best shoes to wear are the least cushioned shoe.