The Ultimate Vibration Plate Exercise Guide
Medically reviewed by: David M. Joyner, MD, FACS
Have you asked yourself, “What even is a vibration plate?”. Or have you been considering a vibration plate to get fit but aren’t sure what to do once you stand on the machine? Or maybe you’re already an elite athlete, and you’re looking for ways to spice up your routine while improving your overall health. In either case, a vibration plate exercise routine is your ticket to better physical health.
Vibration-based exercises are used by people of all fitness levels, from beginners to professional athletes, for better performance and recovery. By performing traditional exercises on a vibration machine, your body works that much harder to stabilize itself, building muscle strength holistically, improving blood circulation, and increasing your body’s range of motion simultaneously.
If you’ve ever been curious about whole body vibration training and the best vibration plate exercises to start with, this guide is for you. Not only will we be exploring a full vibration plate workout for you to replicate, but we’ll also share essential advantages of vibration plate training that elevate it as a training method and wellness solution above traditional exercise practices.
Introduction to Vibration Plate Training
In vibration plate training, you stand or perform activities on a platform that produces constant, rapid vibrations throughout your body. Thus, whole body vibration training causes your muscles to contract equally rapidly while under the effects of the vibration.
This extra challenge means your body has to expend additional energy to remain balanced and compensate against the vibrations—making vibration plate training a simple way to enhance your standard workout routine.
Using vibration plates as a fitness or therapeutic tool has many benefits. For one, it’s perfectly safe for users of all ages and body types. But its safety isn’t all it has going for it—let’s look at just a few of these advantages of vibration plates over conventional workouts.
Why Use a Vibration Plate?
You’ve likely seen these vibration plate machines popping up in gyms across the country. The reason so many people are turning to these machines is that the technology provides unique advantages over typical exercise machines for working out.
Let’s go over some exercises that showcase vibration plate benefits.
Weight Loss and Muscle Gain
When you want to look good and feel good, you need to lose excess fat and put on a few pounds of muscle. Vibration plate training helps with both.
In fact, research suggests that vibration plate machines not only help you lose weight, but vibration enhanced exercise helps to reduce particularly harmful visceral belly fat. In a study comparing vibration plate training and conventional fitness routines, participants showed more successful long-term weight loss when performing exercises with the vibration machine. This study kept both groups of participants to the same calorie-restricted diet.
Then there’s muscle gains. Vibration training activates a continuous stretch reflex called tonal vibration reflex (TVR). While TVR is active, your body recruits 95–97% of skeletal muscle fibers—a giant leap compared to traditional strength training, which only uses 40% of muscle fibers per muscle. The increased muscle activation in the same amount of time you’d spend in the gym makes vibration training an exciting prospect for increasing muscle mass and strength.
Circulation and Bone Density
Vibration plate training does as much good under the surface as it does for the body’s external health and appearance.
The vibrations coursing through your body support the circulatory system by facilitating the delivery of oxygen and other nutrients through healthy blood flow. Studies show that even short intervals of vibration training significantly increase skin blood flow, a process that decreases the appearance of cellulite, contributes to tissue healing, and helps promote healthy fluid levels in the body.
Additionally, vibration training can work wonders for your skeletal health. Increasing the gravitational load on the bones through vibration training promotes healthy growth in bone density. Denser bones mean stronger bones which are less likely to break and develop osteoporosis with aging. Learn more on our guide that covers everything you need to know about vibration training for osteoporosis.
Although these are only a handful of vibration plate benefits, they can greatly impact your overall health and fitness. But to make the most of your vibration plate to reach your unique goals, you’ll need exercises to perform on it and build a personalized routine.
Top Exercises to Perform on a Vibration Plate
There are many top exercises for maximizing the workout benefits of your vibration plate. These are hand-picked to suit multiple fitness goals, meaning you can reap the benefits whether you want to lose weight, gain muscle, or improve your health overall.
Push Ups – Place your hands on the vibration plate shoulder-width apart. While keeping your body straight, lower your chest to about elbow height, then press upwards to complete one rep. Keep your elbows from locking at the top of the motion. To decrease the difficulty, you may perform the exercise from your knees to take pressure off of the hands and upper body. You can also cover the vibration plate with a mat to dampen the intensity of the vibrations and increase comfort.
- Squat – Squats are one of the most beneficial strength exercises you can perform to build your lower body strength and muscle, increase your core strength, burn calories, and boost mobility and athletic ability. With a vibration plate, you can make your squats more efficient by activating more muscle fibers and burning even more calories. With your feet shoulder-width apart, bend at the knees while keeping your back straight until your thighs are near parallel with the floor. To increase difficulty, try the goblet squat variation by holding an upright dumbbell by its end while you squat, increasing the resistance of your movement.
- Upright Rows – Upright rows are a great exercise to target shoulder and upper back development. Keeping an athletic stance with your feet shoulder-width apart on the power plate and knees slightly bent, raise a pair of dumbbells straight upwards from hip height to chest height while keeping your wrists and elbows in line. If dumbbells are too heavy, you can still benefit from using lighter handheld objects such as water bottles or books.
- Deadlifts – Similar to squats, deadlifts are essential to strengthening the lower body. While keeping your back flat and knees relaxed, tilt your upper body downwards at the hips until you feel a stretch in your hamstrings. For optimal results, perform this exercise standing on a vibration plate while holding a set of dumbbells. This exercise also strengthens the back muscles and may relieve middle and lower back pain.
- Burpees – Engage your entire body and increase your heart rate with burpees on your vibration plate. To start, bend at the waist and place your hands on the platform. Then, in a quick, hopping motion, drop your feet back onto the ground—straightening your body into a push-up position. Then, bounce back up to the previous position, stand and raise your arms over your head as you straighten your torso, and jump as high as possible. That’s one rep—try to do as many as you can while maintaining good form for a 30-second interval.
- Lunges – Fire up your quadriceps and core with this straightforward and effective lower body exercise. Standing a comfortable distance from the vibration plate, extend one leg and step directly on the center of the plate. While keeping your back straight and abs braced, lower your body in a “lunging” motion until both knees are roughly bent ninety degrees. Repeat this motion with the opposite leg. Depending on your strength and endurance, you can perform this exercise with just your body weight or hold dumbbells for additional resistance.
This selection of exercises allows you to build and tone your upper and lower body while increasing core strength, burning calories, and torching fat. Set your machine to a range of 30 to 35 Hz of frequency and low amplitude for optimal results.
Safety and Precautions
Vibrating plates are widely considered safe for all age groups, and the vibrations are consistent and controlled to avoid causing pain or discomfort. Additionally, vibration plates are easy to use—you don’t have to be an athlete to benefit from vibration training or perform complicated motions or movements to achieve results. Standing on a vibration plate still grants you the benefits of muscle activation and increased circulation.
That said, just like any exercise, certain preexisting medical conditions might make vibration plates unsuitable for some. Consult your healthcare provider before using a vibration plate to ensure it’s an appropriate fitness solution for your use..
The Power Plate Advantage
Set yourself up for optimal success in your fitness goals by choosing Power Plate for all your vibration plate training needs. As the leader in vibration plate technology, Power Plate’s innovative fitness solutions are effective, safe, and perfect for home use.
Rely on the vibration plate endorsed by dozens of high-profile users, from Hollywood actors to Hall of Fame athletes to medical and training experts. Power Plate is the only vibration plate offering tri-planar movement combined with proprietary Precision Wave technology, allowing you to sculpt and stimulate your body in three dimensions with vibrations precisely tuned to ensure optimal results.
To start conquering your fitness with vibration plate workouts and exercises, check out Power Plate’s whole body vibration platforms and find the perfect match for your body and health needs. While you’re at it, stop by Power Plate’s exercise database to see any of these exercises in action and explore dozens more routines.
Science Daily. Vibration Plate Machines May Aid Weight Loss And Trim Abdominal Fat. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090508045323.htm
The American Chiropractor. Whole Body Vibration: An Alternative Treatment for Chronic Low-Back Pain. http://bstrong4life.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/CAMMISA_TAC_Vol35No01.pdf
National Library of Medicine. The effect of whole body vibration on lower extremity skin blood flow in normal subjects. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17261985/