Suspension Training

Figure 1 – Navy Seal working out with TRX©.

In gyms and sporting facilities, more and more people are talking about CrossFit, functional, suspension, core training, and others. These are training methods that have been in the sporting world for a long time and previously were part of the cultural baggage of proper strength and conditioning trainer.

Recently the Gym-Business has turned the spotlight on these training methods, especially among others the spotlight was turned on suspension training.  In a nutshell, through the use straps and rings the suspension training allows you to train your body by taking advantage of its weight, a training practice already well known to gymnastics.

The most famous tools for this type of training are TRX © and Inkaflexx©. I had the opportunity to experience TRX©,  my self, and I still use for my workouts and to training my clients.

Figure 2 – Frontal view of the Core muscles.

The history behind TRX©  is fascinating; this tool was designed by Randy Hetrick along with his companions of the Navy Seal (special body of the US Navy) who used the parachute straps sewn together and combining them with repair tools for the dinghies. They come up with the TRX ©, with the purpose of training the military in extreme situations with little space and without any tools.

One the characteristic of this instrument is its light weight and therefore its portability. However the TRX © also has other advantages over the standard protocol of traditional bodyweight training: it improves the functional strength (often defined as the neuromuscular efficiency in the displacement of the body load, especially in daily activities) and at the same time allows to increase the flexibility, static and dynamic balance and the stability of the trunk.

One of the essential characteristics of this tool is indeed the possibility to train the core muscles (including the abdominal area, the pelvic floor, the buttocks and the lumbar musculature) figure 2 and to perform a complete three-dimensional workouts (on the three planes: frontal, sagittal and transverse) figure 3; all essential characteristics for an excellent functional training.

Figure 3 – The three body planes: frontal, sagittal and transverse.

The TRX© training is suitable for almost everyone, with the due precautions and precautions, in fact, you can tailor the intensity of the load by merely changing your position with respect to the tool to have a more or less intense stimulus. For example, in a chest press exercise or during a rowing for the back, the more you will be perpendicular to the TRX©  the more difficult the exercise will be.

Concluding suspension training is a training experience that I recommend to everyone, but always pay attention: in suspension training, there are many “un-official” courses and poor quality products. Always ask if your instructor has the qualifications to teach with specific tools such as TRX ©



  • Ryder A, TRX Suspension Trainer,Barb Gates 2014