Whether you're training for fat loss, muscle, strength or athletic performance, adding targeted resistance is a GREAT way to improve the quality and efficiency of your workouts.
And that's where the Mass Suit comes in...
It's a wearable piece of "on-board band resistance" training equipment that will add a new element of resistance and challenge to your training., to help you burn more calories, build more strength, run faster and jump higher.
But does it WORK?
Let's find out!
What IS the Mass Suit?
The Mass Suit is a very unique piece of training equipment...it's essentially a harness that you wear on your body. It has an array of clips, straps, bands and attachments with the simple purpose of adding elastic resistance to body movements.
The Mass Suit comes with the main harness, two elbow straps, two knee straps, two foot straps, and two handles. All of these attachments are connected to the main harness by elastic tubing/bands that are clipped on.
The elbow straps add resistance to upwards and forward-moving arm movements. The knee straps give resistance primarily targeted to the core and hip flexors (i.e. for running and sprinting). The foot straps are going to target the glutes, providing resistance on squatting and jumping movements.
In addition, the Mass Suit has two handle attachments that you can use to add additional upper body resistance.
The Mass Suit site has a great instructional video that walks you through the whole process of customizing the setup from start to finish.
Essentially, it's on-board resistance for a wide variety of movement patterns and exercises!
What's So Good About Mass Suit Training?
1. It addresses one of the biggest issues I've had encountered with athletic training...how to add resistance to movements in a way that is NATURAL and doesn't load the joints incorrectly or in vulnerable positions.
2. You can use it for bodyweight and free weight movements to effectively target the strength curves of exercises, which means you can build strength and muscle more efficiently. I'll go into detailed examples of this in the exercise section below.
3. It burns substantially more calories than "non Mass Suit" training due to the extra resistance being constantly placed on your body not during the exercises you're doing. If you're sprinting, your limbs are also moving against resistance WHILE you're sprinting.
What Could Be Improved With the Mass Suit...
Overall, the Mass Suit is a very nice piece of equipment...very well constructed and very effective for the purpose it was designed. The initial setup takes a bit of time, but once you use it a bit and learn how the parts function and fit together, it's actually really easy to work with. I watched the instructional video and was able to get it up and running within a few minutes.
And right up front, there's nothing here that should prevent you picking up the Mass Suit, if you're interested in it. The only things I found that could be improved are really pretty minor.
One of the things you will probably notice is that some of the attachments/straps do tend to pinch your arms and knees a bit. It's nothing crazy but when you first start, it might be a bit uncomfortable. If you find it a bit too uncomfortable, you can very easily wear long sleeves and long pants to give yourself some additional cushioning.
Also, if you're doing any overhead pressing exercises or movements, the elbow attachments may slip down a bit. I do have to say, though, I don't think there's really a way around that in terms of design...when you straighten the elbow, the shape of the arm because such that there's not much for the attachment to "hook" onto like when the elbow is bent.
Being a "resistance-focused" trainer like I am, I would also love to have a way to attach my own training bands onto the harness in addition to or instead of the ones that come with the kit...(rest assured, I AM working on that).
What Exercises Can You Do With the Mass Suit?
This is where the fun begins...I've put together a 12 minute video covering a variety of exercises and movements that you can do with the Mass Suit. You'll be able to perform athletic movements (like sprinting, running, jumping, bounding, lunging) as well as weight training movements (like bench press) and bodyweight exercises (like chin-ups and push-ups).
As far as exercises you CAN'T do, the Mass Suit won't give you any additional benefits for the vast majority of isolation exercises (like curls). A few of the notable exceptions are lateral raises and flyes.
Also, the Mass Suit won't give you resistance on pulling movements...because of the band positioning, it'll actually give you assistance. This means you'll be able to use the Mass Suit for things like Assisted Chin-Ups and Pull-Ups.
In addition to these, I've also come up with a few unique movements of my own that aren't "by the book" but really open up the possibilities available to you with the equipment.
Really, the sky's the limit with it...almost any athletic movement you can do on the field can be done wearing the Mass Suit.
Exercise #1 - Jumping
Exercise #2 - Side Lunges
Exercise #3 - Side Lunge With Shoulder Press
Exercise #4 - Goblet Side Lunges
Exercise #5 - Single Dumbbell Shoulder Press
Exercise #6 - Bear Crawl
Exercise #7 - Bounding
Exercise #8 - Assisted Chin-Ups and Pull-Ups
Exercise #9 - Barbell Bench Press
Exercise #10 - Dumbbell Bench Press
Exercise #11 - Loaded Carries
The Mass Suit is one of the most unique pieces of training equipment I've had the pleasure to work with. It allows you to add very targeted, very effective resistance to just about any form of athletic movement as well as a wide variety of bodyweight and free weight exercises.
It's well constructed and built to last, and you'll get the hang of using it very quickly. Within a few minutes of playing around with it, you'll learn how it feels and how your body moves with it on.
Bottom line, the Mass Suit is absolutely worth the price...it'll keep you getting results and having FUN in your training for a very long time!
Stay tuned for my next experiment, which is going to be wearing the Mass Suit while pushing a minivan loaded with my neighbors kids up and down the street...
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