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Suspension training takes workouts to new heights
TRX suspension training has gotten a big boost this year, with mentions in national magazines including Men’s Health, Shape, Muscle and Fitness, Men’s Fitness – even Entrepreneur.

TRX, or total resistance exercise, was developed by a Navy SEAL who originally stitched together parachute webbing he could use for straps. He anchored those to a door and started a strength building routine using his own body weight for resistance.

That way, he and other SEALs could stay in peak physical condition on the ship and work out in small spaces, said Edward Health & Fitness instructor Denise Ganansia. With TRX, “you can work out in an 8-foot-by-3-foot area,” she said.

It’s so low-tech, people wonder what to do with it at first.

“People are always like, ‘What is that?’ when they see these black nylon cords hanging from the ceiling,” Ganansia said. “It’s not like anything at the gym – nothing I’ve seen before.”

She teaches the popular one-hour TRX Circuit Challenge class and its half-hour version, TRX Express.

Throughout the class, she leads participants through TRX moves involving pull-ups, push-ups, lunges, leg lifts and some less-familiar exercises – only with a bit of that Peter Pan “I’m flying!” feeling built in.

Twenty-somethings to 60-somethings are signing up.

“It’s for all levels of fitness because by adjusting either your position or your stance, you can put more weight into it or less weight,” Ganansia said. “You can make your exercises more or less intense depending on your fitness level. So everybody can do it, and you can always challenge to do more. … I think why it’s been so popular is people are looking for something different, something challenging, something that improves their core and stability.”

Unlike circuit weight training, which focuses on one muscle group at a time, TRX training requires many muscle groups to work together for the participant to keep balance. Ganansia said the resulting whole-body strength transforms people’s daily tasks.

“It makes everything they do – getting in and out of the car, picking something up off the floor, normal everyday things they do – you’ll become stronger,” she said.


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801 S. Washington, Naperville, IL 60540 • (630) 527-3000

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