VIPR Fitness Training: Great or Just a Fad?

Last week I had my first ever ViPR workout. I was calling it V-I-P-R until our class instructor informed me that it was just pronounced “Viper”! But what the heck were these strange looking tubes? Well the name is an acronym for Vitality, Performance, and Reconditioning and the device itself is a weighted hollow tube around 48 inches long with grip points that you can use to add resistance to your workouts. It looked like a rather simple piece of equipment but as a fitness tool it’s actually very versatile. The simple shape and grip handles mean that you can perform any number of movements that include pulling, pushing and twisting – patterns we all perform in our daily lives.
ViPR is certainly no easy workout. It focuses on core strength and is a great device for performing functional exercise using all three movement patterns. This ensures that you work muscles that may normally be left dormant when using traditional gym machines or other fitness equipment. It can be dragged, jumped over, carried, thrown, rolled, tilted, stepped on or flipped. I like to fact that I felt my core and legs burning within just a few minutes! We were holding it above our head’s whilst performing jumping jacks, pushing it infront of us during sit ups, doing ski-hops across it from side to side, performing squats, upper cuts, side lunges and even pushing it along the ground. I was amazed how many circuit based exercises could be performed with this device. I thought I was pretty fit but this really pushed me outside of my comfort zone.
Whilst the device looks a bit faddy, in fact I found it to be a great workout and it has certainly proved to be a popular piece of equipment to use amongst both recreational exercisers and sports such as martial arts and cage fighters. Whilst I would probably not want to spend a whole hour using the ViPR, it’s fun and a great addition to any workout routine.