You can lift all the free weights you want and swing kettlebells until your calluses have calluses but unless you're integrating some form of aerobic or cardio training into your daily workout routine, then achieving your fitness goals will always lie just out of reach.
Cardio training doesn't have to be something you don't look forward to or avoid altogether. In fact, with a VersaClimber climbing machine cardio workouts have never been easier.
In this post, we'll compare the best VersaClimbers and give you the lowdown on all their specs and features.
We have compiled a list of frequently asked VersaClimber questions. If you have a question that is not answered below, please feel free to give us a call.
VersaClimber Frequently Asked Questions
What is the VersaClimber?
The VersaClimber is the leading low impact, total-body workout climbing exercise machine. Launched in 1981, the VersaClimber is used in health clubs, military training, sports medicine facilities, corporate and personal gyms all over the world.
What parts of my body does it workout?
The VersaClimber provides a total-body exercise, working the muscles in your arms, legs, chest, back, shoulders, and more. The machine forces your body to work in a contra-lateral way – meaning your right arm needs to work with your left leg and vice versa – targeting muscle groups that aren’t activated by other workouts.
How tough is it to use?
For first-time climbers, it is recommended to go for a 15 to 20 minute climb – which includes a five-minute warm up and a three to five minute cool down. Once you’ve got the hang of it, you can take your workouts up to 60-minute sessions.
How do I get started?
1. Set the handles to shoulder height by standing on the pedals and moving the handgrips into position. Then tighten the straps on the foot pedals around your feet.
2. Select your preferred exercise mode by either adjusting the tension using the number pad or select a virtual opponent or virtual landmark mode. If you’re unsure what exercise you would like to do, push the QUICK START button and follow the instructions to set the time, rate, or duration.
3. Now it's time to climb! Stretch your right arm and left leg up, then repeat on the opposite side. Continue this alternating motion. To maintain shock and injury-free training, do not ‘bottom out’ – or hit the bottom of the machine with the foot pedals – at the end of each stroke.
How long do I need to use it for?
Some people find it useful to use the VersaClimber for a 10-20 second sprint at the end of a workout for a quick cool down, while others use it for around 20 minutes each day as a regular cardio routine to help them burn calories.
For strength training you can use the VersaClimber for less than a minute, setting the hydraulics to a slow rate and performing 8 to 12 reps. For power training, set the hydraulics to a faster rate and perform 15 to 30 reps.
For endurance training, we recommend a 30-minute session with the hydraulics set at an intermediate rate of motion.
How should I use it as part of a holistic workout?
Along with providing a full-body cardio workout, the VersaClimber is designed to work like weight training machines and can focus on your lower or upper body specifically if set correctly.
For a lower body workout, the machine offers exercises such as isolated leg lifts, leg presses and quad burning squats. For these, set the hydraulic rate relatively slow, hold onto the stationary handrails at the sides, and perform the specific motions for each exercise. The position of your feet on the pedals can also work different sections of your lower body; for example, climbing on your heels will work your quads, while climbing on your toes will work on your calves.
Isolated exercises can be used to focus purely on your arms, shoulders, chest and back by standing on the isolated base plate in front of the machine rather than the pedals, and either pushing or pulling on the handles.
What’s a good workout time/goal for a beginner?
When using the VersaClimber for the first time, you should take it easy, using a step no greater than four to six inches. Keep your pace at a comfortable speed and try to go for 15 to 20 minutes.
How can I track my training?
The VersaClimber monitor screen provides information on your exercise such as the duration of your session, your climbing rate (Ft/min) and the distance you have traveled. Using this information, you will be able to monitor your progress by judging the distance you have traveled over a certain amount of time.
How easy is it to install?
The VersaClimber is simple to install and does not require any specific electronic knowledge or DIY. However, you may find it easier to assemble if you have a second person to support you.