The Power Institute is a fitness studio located near Bloor and Yonge streets that utilizes vibration training with Power Plate equipment. In fact, they're the only facility in Ontario that offers certification training for Power Plate. While it may sound gimmicky, there's actually quite a bit of sound science behind it.
Performing static or dynamic strength exercises on a vibrating surface forces your body to engage more muscle fibres than doing so on a stable surface. It provides functional training that can build strength, improve balance, burn calories, and shed fat. As a result, it is often used for rehabilitative and athletic training purposes.
But trust me, even if you aren't a senior with limited mobility or an elite athlete, there are plenty of reasons why you should drop in to try out this workout. Aside from the the fact that your trial visit is free, using Power Plate machines increases the intensity of exercises and you can thus get a butt-kicking workout in just 30 minutes. The training staff can accommodate various levels of fitness, so the fancy machinery shouldn't scare anybody off.
The studio is immaculate, with an elegant lounge space at the front and two workout areas. There are lockers and shower facilities available as well. For every workout, a certified trainer guides you through a full-body routine, or a routine devised expressly to suit your individual needs. When I dropped in for a visit on a Friday afternoon, there were several seniors, with various physical limitations, demonstrating just how versatile these machines can be.
My trainer took me through an extremely challenging workout targeting mostly lower body and core. I tend to avoid a lot of lower body work due to hamstring tendonitis, but I was surprised and thrilled to discover that I felt I was able to work my muscles without the pain and tightness that usually results.
The Power Institute also offers training with Kettle Bells, yoga and boxing. In addition, the studio has a beauty spa which includes Lipomassage, a non-surgical alternative to liposuction, which reduces cellulite and contours the body.
Sessions at the Power Institute don't come cheap, however, the cost is pretty reasonable when you buy training packages. While a single half-hour session is $55, 50 visits breaks down to just $35/session, not much more than a drop-in class at many fitness studios.
Photos by Jesse Milns