What’s a ViPr and how’s it useful?

by Nov 5, 2019Fitness, Health0 comments


A ViPr (Vitality Performance Reconditioning) is a cylinder of thick rubber which is used for movement training. It was originally conceived by Simon Bennett who worked in the ice hockey world in Canada. His team kept losing so he wanted a way to get them better conditioned. He enlisted the help of Michol Dalcourt and together they came up with the concept together.
The hollow tube allows for more authentic movement simulating both  athletic and common everyday movements.
How many times have you heard the story of someone putting their back out picking up a pen?! Silly but it’s true, if our bodies stop doing the everyday movements, we are on a slippery slope to ill health and poor function.

Exercise Industry to blame!

Sadly the exercise industry has made the world want big muscles and think that if it looks good it’s healthy. Muscle mass is good for metabolic health but this ethos promotes unrealistic body images for most people. People think if they’re not lifting heavy weights they aren’t doing the right thing. 
Your body’s ability to move through a range of motion with control is a key foundation in human health and if we don’t keep working this mobility we will begin to lose it or injure ourselves trying. 

3 Planes of Movement

If you have a read of my earlier blog about cross training for runners I explain about the 3 planes of movement and how important it is to work all 3 when you are training. Our balance system (vestibular apparatus) is set up with these 3 planes of movement being controlled and measured by the brain at all times. When we walk, when we run we are using all three of these planes. 
If we lie on a bench and push a bar upwards from out chest we are only using one plane. If we move sideways (e.g. side lunge) again only using 1 plane. The most forgotten and yet the one humans are best at compared to any other species is rotation. We can throw (or swing a club) better than any other on the planet. Others have to lob when they throw. 
When you put all 3 together we are now mimicking the human movement we were designed to use every day.
Our vestibular system is working to keep us balanced and the brain is processing a lot more information on how to keep us upright while completing a far more natural and whole movement. 

Loaded movement = Real Life

When it comes to life I don’t see many people doing the same movements they do in a traditional gym setting. In fact if you look at machines that put you in a fixed plane of movement where you don’t have to think just push or pull or whatever it wants you to do your brain really doesn’t have to do anything. Your body will only be good at working in that plane of movement.
Add in real like and you sudden;y see the lack of symmetry in every day activities. The angles and the loads are always changing and making us work from unusual places.
Have you ever picked up a child that didn’t move while you were lifting or holding them?? Your body and brain have to be ready for the unpredictable nature of that movement. 


Bring on the ViPr

With a tool that mimics the loaded movement of everyday life you’ll get BIG wins with your body’s ability to handle more scenarios. Going back to the running blog, that’s why runners MUST get cross training into their programme as they generally run in a straight line, yes using 3 planes of movement, but working the same muscles group again and again. Variety and mixture is key to resilient bodies that have high capability in may situations.

If loaded movement sounds like something you need more of drop me a line at rich@F4L.co.nz or book in for a free 20 mins chat to see how I can help.

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