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I did EMS training twice a week for a month, and here’s what happened


EMS training (or Electro Muscle Stimulation training) promises the equivalent of four hours of HITT exercise in just twenty minutes. Is the hype real? And can you really shortcut your exercise regime so dramatically? GLAMOUR’s Emily Maddick worked out twice a week for a month at E-pulsive at Repose in Kensington, where they specialise in EMS Training – here’s her diary.

I’ve just finished my first ever EMS Training session; I’m drenched in sweat, purple in the face, semi-naked in the (small) changing rooms when who should I bump into but none other than Poppy Delevingne. Possibly one of the last people you could ever wish to see in such a state. But I am on a high, buzzing from this extraordinary workout experience – and as we get chatting, it turns out that Poppy is also a fan, telling me that she swears by an E-pulsive session on top of her regular workout regime ahead of a modelling job or a red carpet event. So, if it’s good enough for one of the UK’s top models, I’m in.

For nearly 20 years I have been a big runner, but recently at age 42, my knees have been playing up and I haven’t been able to run as much as I used to, which was between 10k – 15k a week. Not running is affecting my mental health, and I am noticeably more anxious and grumpy. I love swimming – which I do at least twice a week – and I also try to go to the gym a couple of times a month. I still want to increase my cardio, yet am also time poor, so the thought of achieving the equivalent of a four-hour HITT session in 20 minutes is incredibly appealing. But also, I am sceptical. Can this really be true? And is it healthy?

How does EMS training work?

EMS utilises electrical impulses to stimulate muscle contractions, enhancing the effectiveness of traditional exercise routines, such as lunges, squats, sit ups, core and weight work. These contractions are similar to the signals sent by our own central nervous system to the rest of our body. The electrical current flows throughout your muscles and the contractions reach deep fibres of muscles you didn’t even know you had.

During an EMS training session, you wear a special suit embedded with electrodes that cover all the major muscle groups: arms, abs, back, thighs and knees. As the electrical impulses are transmitted, the muscles contract and relax at a very high speed, engaging a higher percentage of muscle fibres compared to conventional workouts.

The intensity and frequency of these impulses can be adjusted to target specific muscle groups and dialled up or down by your trainer. This intense muscle engagement creates a more challenging and effective training session, even with minimal external resistance.

What are the benefits of EMS Training?

EMS can aid in building strength, increasing muscle mass, and improving overall fitness levels. The controlled muscle contractions also help to improve blood circulation and metabolism, promoting better cardiovascular health and potentially helping weight management. It also drastically cuts your workout time – with a 20-minute session being equivalent to several hours of traditional training.



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