TRX Training 101 (or, What are those strap things?)

Have you ever seen those straps hanging around the club somewhere, and maybe you’ve even seen someone doing an exercise while hanging from them, and wondered what they are and why the heck they’re in the gym? Have you heard people mention TRX Training and wondered what the heck they’re talking about?

It seems like with all of the expensive equipment with fancy gears and levers all over the place that a set of canvas straps hanging from some monkey bars are pretty low tech, and therefore probably not great gym equipment, right? Not so fast. (Also, keep reading, there’s a free session offer at the bottom of this post!)

We talked to Level 1 TRX Certified trainer, Raelynn Baumann, who is also Personal Training and Pilates Certified, about TRX Training so that we could better understand what it is and why it’s in Elevate Fitness clubs.

Q: How and when did you first hear about TRX Training and what attracted you to it?

A: In 2010, I saw TRX in a Men’s Health magazine (yes I read that) and I was intrigued by the fact that you only used your body weight with it, and people were still raving about the quality of the workouts they were doing.

Q: What made you decide that TRX was a tool you wanted to be able to offer to your clients as a Personal Trainer?

A: As soon as I trained on The TRX myself I knew it was my new favorite way to train and would be great for clients too. Anything that can get me personal results, I know that it can work for my clients, too. And I’m always interested in bringing my clients the newest and most effective training modes.

Q: So you personally train on TRX? Why?

A: Yes, everytime I workout I use the TRX, whether it’s a full workout on the straps, or I just hit a body part or two, or use it to stretch out after a session. it’s a compliment to any workout/exercise you do. And it’s working your core 100% of the time you use it, and I really love that.

Q: What makes TRX different than working with weights or machines?

A: With TRX, you ARE the weight or machine! Just by moving your feet closer to or further from the anchor point, you make the exercise harder or easier. It’s pretty basic – 2 straps, and you are only supported by your hands or your feet, depending on the exercise.

Q: It sounds really interesting. So, who should incorporate TRX into their fitness routines?

A: Honestly, everyone!

Q: How did TRX come about?

A: Rope training has been around as early as the 1800s. Randy Hetrick, a former Navy Seal and Stanford MBA graduate, developed the Total Resistance eXercise (TRX) equipment and the associated Suspension Training bodyweight exercises in the 1990s, and started marketing it in 2005.

Q: Are you certified in TRX? Why bother getting TRX certified when you’re already a certified personal trainer and Pilates instructor?

A: Yes, I’m certified. It’s always best to workout with a certified trainer so you are taught the exercise correctly, with proper form to minimize the risk of injury. TRX training uses your muscles differently than traditional strength training, so it’s helpful to work with someone who’s been trained to maximize that effect and get you the best possible results.

Q: As I mentioned, you’re also Pilates certified. What do Pilates and TRX have in common and what makes them different?

A: Good question. They actually have a lot in common. A lot of Pilates instructors love the TRX. Both work on core movement, lengthening and strengthening. TRX is a set of straps, in which either hands or feet are suspended. Pilates is a method which can be done on a mat, or on various pieces of equipment such as a reformer, or chair and barrels. Both can be done almost anywhere.

Q: What advice do you have for someone who’s interested in TRX but hasn’t ever tried it?

A: Find a certified instructor. Have an open mind, your body is the only machine you’ll be using. All exercise can be tweaked to your own desired level of difficulty.

Q: Thanks so much for taking the time to answer our questions. Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers about TRX Training?

A: TRX is low impact and will help increase your lung capacity. Your core is challenged through the entire workout. The TRX reduces time spent moving from machine to machine as well. I can’t say enough about TRX, if you haven’t tried it out yet, you should. Come on in to Elevate Fitness and let me get you on the straps to try it out!

Try a complimentary training session (first-time clients, aged 18 and over, local residents only) to learn more about TRX. Some restrictions may apply.