You might have seen people using these weird straps in parks before but haven't given suspension training much thought up until now. Because let's face it, how would a mere mortal like us know the benefits of suspension trainers? And, more importantly, why should you care? As it turns out, there are more than one reason why you should consider doing indoor or outdoor workouts using suspension training sets, as explained below.
But before that, just a recap: a suspension trainer set usually consists of an adjustable strap you can anchor to a fixed point (e.g. a hook, door or even a thicker tree branch). The straps are generally sturdy, especially quality products such as the TRX HOME2, one of the best suspension trainers on the market today.
Without further ado, let's see what dome of the benefits are of suspension trainers.
1. You can workout anywhere using them
As mentioned above, you'll often see people doing TRX workouts in parks, anchoring the suspension trainers to thicker tree branches or pull up bars found in public places. Suspension trainers often come with a door anchor attachment so you don't even have to drill holes in the wall to use them at home (but make sure the door is sturdy enough, though).
You can even workout with these workout straps in hotel rooms or even at work: as long as there is at least a roughly 2 m2 workout space near a suspension point, you are good to go.
Try this TRX home workout for glutes from trainee-stunt woman Daisy Hughes for size.
2. Compact form factor
Another feature that enables people to workout with suspension trainers anywhere is their portability. As you can see on the image above, when packed away, the TRX HOME2 takes up very little space and the bundle is also surprisingly light. You can throw it in a backpack or gym bag and forget it's there until needed.
3. Great for 'pull' exercises
Bodyweight exercises such as push ups or sit ups are great but it's much harder to work your 'pull' muscles (e.g. biceps) without any equipment. On the other hand, suspension trainers are perfect for pull movements: you can perform anything from biceps curls to inverted rows and more, helping you get those big arms and strong back you always wanted.
4. Works the core (hard)
Want to know how to get a six pack? You need to start doing the best core exercises. Or better still, you can workout with suspension trainers and work your core harder even when you aren't doing core exercises. Straightforward exercises such as push ups become even more demanding on the core when you have to work on fixing your body from swinging. Isometric moves (when you need to hold your body in a certain position for an elongated period of time) become extra challenging using a suspension trainer.
4. Enables you to workout quietly
Speaking of core exercises: one of the best one, mountain climbers, is famous for being effective albeit very loud to perform. Suspension trainers can help alleviate this issue: mount your feet on the straps and you can do mountain climbers without making any pounding sound with your feet, something your downstairs neighbours will surely appreciate.
Suspension training sets are tough. The carabiner on the aforementioned TRX Home2, for example, is tested for 1,300-lbs: that's nearly 600 kilos of weight the carabiner can support. The straps themselves are made of hard wearing synthetic materials that will last for years at least. As long as you you don't let the set gather dust/mould etc. in a dark cave, it will maintain its quality for a long time.