How to Evaluate Fitness Equipment

 

The correct criteria to use to evaluate fitness might surprise you. If you are asked, it is possible that quality might leap to mind. Or budget, or safety. All these and more are important. But the most important criterion of all is represented by the question: Would you use it?

This is not just a matter of your personal motivation or commitment to fitness. Not in this case, anyway. This is a question of whether the equipment will do what you want and need, so you’ll be motivated to continue to use it.

Quality is a must for this purpose, although it is only a starting point. Any advert claims that involve ‘results without effort’ is just a con. There is no such thing. Even if there were, it would not be any fun anyway. Much of the impetus coming from the train is just the effort you put out to get results. Not only those electric ab exercises do not work, they are boring.

These devices are a good example of an important thing to watch. Any ad that says you can spot reduce fat or develop only one set of muscles is simply misleading.

The body only preferentially reduces fat more in one area than another, for example around the waist if that is where most resides. Of course, if you reduce body fat is the most obvious, where the majority is stored. Burn enough calories and your body will go after stored fat to make up for an energy deficit. So, the results will be most visible in areas where the body had stored most of it. How could it be otherwise?

Even when you use one set of muscles can hardly avoid the use of another. So, the moral is: Beware of hype that it must do this or that piece of gear to get the muscles working X. There is always more than one way to develop and always some overlap in how the equipment develops your body.

Reviews of equipment are important. If other people are happy, you probably will. But beware ardent enthusiasm, which, like those ads that promise more than they could ever deliver. Before and after photos with captions that tout the results of the use of item X are suspect. Your results – because of your unique effort, body composition and other factors – can vary widely.

When considering cost, you should consider all costs, not just the advertised price. What sounds like a lot maybe not so good when you include shipping, taxes or other additional duties.

Look in the warranty and return policy. If you must return a portion of the tool, paying for return shipping is normal. But watch out for re-stocking fees that can run as high as 15%. A 30-day return policy is pretty standard, but not universal. The equipment is still worth the price. You need to judge each case in light of your personal circumstances.

When the item has passed all these tests, consider whether this particular piece of equipment is going to meet your fitness goals. It will help you reduce weight or build strength or develop cardiovascular health? Will be fun to use while you meet these goals? A lot of home fitness equipment will do all these things and do them well. If you find one that will, buy it.

 

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