Product Name: Powerball
MSRP: $59.95 ($45.95 without docking station)
Availability: Low (Online Only As Far As I Know)
If you remember a few weeks back, I reviewed my big stick. Well, today I’ll be reviewing my powerball… which can spin so fast that it can generate it’s own force. About 38lbs worth!
…balls of steel are so 1990’s.
So what is the Powerball? It’s basically a mini hand-held gyroscope which you have to manually spin. As it spins faster and faster, it creates a force which you have to FIGHT to control. At very high speeds this thing feels like like it wants to leave your hands go bounce around the room like an Indian rubber ball. It’s fucking intense. But before talk more about how to spin my ball… here is the official explanation from Dynaflex.
Product Info & Claims:
“Few folks could have imagined that a polycarbonate sphere about the size of a tennis ball would change the way people workout and recover from injuries forever. But that’s exactly what happened with the incredible popularity of the patented Dynaflex Gyro. As a result, Dynaflex International has gone on to established itself as a leader and innovator of fitness products.
Whether you’re a weekend athlete—or simply want to improve the way you look and feel—the Dynaflex lineup of exercise gyros represent the fitness breakthrough you’ve been looking for! So small they go anywhere. Yet so powerful, you’ll SEE and FEEL tremendous results in minutes a day!
You’ve got to experience the gyroscopic effect of your Dynaflex gyro to believe it! Just get it going, and let your gyro do the rest. Spin it left-handed… right-handed… clockwise… counter clockwise… There’s no right or wrong way to use your Dynaflex gyro… just pick it up, have fun… and start realizing fitness benefits that you never thought possible from such a small, hand-held fitness wonder.
When we say that you will FEEL and SEE the Dynaflex difference after just a few minutes of use, it’s a fact! That’s because these amazing fitness devices generate remarkable dynamic resistance—up to 40 pounds of dynamic resistance depending on the Dynaflex model you choose. You’ll quickly FEEL the toning and strengthening begin in your forearms, biceps, shoulders, wrists and hands. You’ll start performing better in your favorite sport. And you’ll even look better in your favorite sleeveless top.
Best of all, since the dynamic resistance generated by Dynaflex is controlled by the user, you workout and progress at your own pace!”
The product came in a fancy little box. Inside I got the powerball, a starter cord, the electric starter dock and a mini training cd. Design-wise the packaging could have been more eye-pleasing and judging by their website, they seem to have switched to the plastic packaging with bright colors. Damn it… they got to it before I could harass em. They’re quick learners over at Dynaflex.
Eager to get the gyroscopic action started, I popped in 2 AA batteries into the docking station, threw on the powerball and watched it glow to life. It was purrrty.
I hadn’t watched the training cd at this point but I had seen the instructions… and because I’m relatively intelligent I pretty much knew how to work it. So after it started to glow I immediately picked it up and started twisting my wrist in a clockwise motion. The glow got brighter and brighter as the rotor went form a whispering whirl to a full out scream! It sounded loud and mechanical. The gyroball was going fucking nuts… it’s like there was a beast inside wanting to be unleashed. I held on TIGHT and I kept spinning it… faster, faster, faster until my forearms could take no more. I think if I kept spinning it any longer it would have exceeded my grip capacity and produced it’s own earth-sucking black hole.
This was the coolest feeling I’d ever had. I put my right forearm next to my left and the difference was un-denyable. Besides the burning feeling you could clearly see the pump… my veins were popping like the roots of an aged tree. Every heart beat could be felt pulsating with the slightest touch of my forearm.
I wanted more… so started it back up using the docking station and used my left arm this time. You can’t have just one pumped up arm… how stupid is that? Also, here’s an animation of what it looks like in action…
It’s hard to tell but but although I’m moving my wrist to spin it, the Powerball it self wants to move about in all directions (left, right, up, down) and I’m fighting hard as fuck to keep in in my hands. Ok so the gyro itself works, we’ll talk more about it’s long term uses in a second. Let’s take a look at the rest of the shit you get in the box, like that docking station. It does it’s job and when doing nothing and looks relatively attractive on your desk. I mean it’s not the sexiest piece of plastic out there, but you can’t complain either. People WILL ask you what the hell that strange looking ball is doing on your desk, and I’m sure you’ll gladly show them.
But after a bit of use, I had some issues. After a week straight, I noticed it wasn’t spinning up my ball as fast as it used to. I thought maybe the batteries had died so upon replacing them, I realized that it wasn’t the batteries, it was the un-inspiring construction of the thing from the inside. In the picture below you’ll see that the “wheel” of the docking station is crooked, it used to be in the dead center when I got it…
So after opening it up, I immediately noticed why…
The electric motor rests on a flimsy piece of metal that completely gives “in” when the slightest amount of pressure is applied. I had to bend the metal plate upward so that the wheel would make adequate contact with my ball. This is fine for me, but if someone is paying an extra $15 for a docking station, I expect the build quality to be far better than this. A 5 year old could have come up a better design. It’s not worth the extra cash in my opinion, at least not until the improve the design of the thing.
“So how are you supposed to start it?!”… you say
Ah… that’s when the starter cord comes into play. In fact, after using the starter cord I found it to be more efficient. It just doesn’t have the “coolness factor” of having the ball sit on your desk or glow up as it spins but who gives a shit? Once you start using it, it’s gona glow anyways.
Then we come to that training CD. Oh dear god where do I start? Alright, first of all I will say this: It’s informative, and at face value it does the job of helping you get the gyro started, gives you a few training tips and prevents people from being frustrated because if you don’t have a docking station then starting it can be tricky… it just takes a lil bit of practice.
However, the presentation… haha where do I start. I was fucking laughing my ass off the whole time. It all comes down to the douche on the video. He calls himself “the muscle man of technology!”
Uh… I don’t even know what the hell that means but ok. After doing some research he’s also known as Mr.Bicep and he presents gadgets on some local tv channel in the states. Almost every picture of him on the net haves him doing the same lame pose; flexing both his biceps. It’s very try hard and quite frankly, it’s pathetic.
So why am I bashing this training CD? Surely it’s better than nothing. I guess… yeah. But if you’re gona throw in a CD then it needs to be up to par. Here are the 2 quirks that I didn’t like:
1. This bicep guy is CLEARLY reading off a teleprompter or some shit. His eyes are never on you so are watching a guy read some mundane content. I think listening would be bad enough. You know what, I don’t have a problem with someone reading for a video but at least don’t make it SO obvious. Oh and it’s not like the content he’s spitting out is outrageously complex either. An out of shape loser could easily use his own words to explain how this works. It’s not rocket science.
Hey bicep guy, I’m up here, stop starin at my crotch!
2. He’s using a different model. Starting Dynaflex’s line up of gyros might be similar but please do no take the shotgun approach. The model he was using in the video is the one with the handle on it and therefore some of the “curling” exercises he showed cannot be done with just the powerball. You can try but it just ain’t the same. I would have liked to see specialty exercises for my ball… but whatever. Fuck it, I just innovated on my own. It all makes it seem like an after thought.
Real World Results:
This will be the shortest section ever. IT WORKS. After using it straight for one week I feel like Popeye. My forearms are tighter and might I say they even appear slightly leaner than before. I was talking to friend at the gym and had my arms crossed… looking in the mirror I was like “yeah… those forearms look cut!”
It’s also had an awesome impact on my martial arts training. Anyone who’s done traditional Karate knows the forearm strengthening blocks we do with a training partner, and they were a breeze. Taking a roundhouse or two on the forearms was also less painful so I have to admit, the shit works yo.
Although the docking station’s build quality leaves much to be desired and the training CD could use some personalization touches… I’m going to ignore all of that and focus on the Powerball itself. You don’t have to be a genius to figure out that if it were my money, I wouldn’t get this combo… instead I’d save myself the extra ~$15 and plunk down $45 just for the Powerball itself because that’s the star of the show here.
It’s build quality is superb; it’s rock-like. I haven’t seen build quality this good since I reviewed the Gripmaster. The performance is EXCELLENT… the resistance is very manageable and best of all it’s very controllable. I really can’t describe the feeling… you just gota try it. And if you still think this is some bullshit toy then let me throw a challenge at your face. Try spinning the Powerball as fast as you can for 60 seconds. You’ll forearms will feel like someone poured a bucket load of acid on em’. I kid you not.
So at 40+ dollars it’s a little pricey, even if you’re opting for the ball itself. But with lifetime warranty and the fact that it’s very portable, I think it’s great for golfers, baseball-ers, archers, tennis players, rock climbers and martial artists… or even those of you who type all day since it can very easily prevent carpel tunnel.
It comes highly recommended and it deserves my…
P.S – So what do you think, will you be powerballin’? Do you already own one of these things? What’s your take on it?
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