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What is Whole Body Vibration?

By Dr. Jon Thomas, DC, PSc.D, Board Certified Chiropractic Physician.
Courtesy Wikimedia Commons
At Vibrant Life Health Center, we like to use all the tools that are available to help our patients achieve their fitness objectives. One thing that has become increasingly available in the past two decades is an exercise technique called Whole Body Vibration.
People working out at a gym exercise various muscle groups one group at a time. Whole Body Vibration (WBV) is a method of exercise which engages many muscle groups simultaneously. WBV involves side-to-side motion which forces the body to regain balance very quickly. All of the muscle groups engage in rebalancing. Muscles contract at a rate of up to 30 times per second as they burn fat and build muscle.
“With whole-body vibration, you stand, sit or lie on a machine with a vibrating platform. As the machine vibrates, it transmits energy to your body, forcing your muscles to contract and relax dozens of times each second… Some research shows that whole-body vibration, when performed correctly and under medical supervision when needed, can reduce back pain, improve balance in older adults, and reduce bone loss.”
Edward Laskowski, M.D., Mayo Clinic
Courtesy of VibaBody
Does WBV Really Work?
While WBV may seem new to many, using vibrations to achieve fitness goals has been going on for centuries. According to Health Status, Gustav Zander was a physician and inventor from Sweden who developed exercise machines that used springs, weights, and pulleys in the 1800s. Many of those machines utilized vibrations. In 1895, Dr. John Harvey Kellogg also used vibration technology for therapeutic purposes.  In the 1960s, German innovators took things a step further when they developed an exercise technique which they called rhythmic neuromuscular stimulation.
Starting in the 1960s, the space race between Russia and the United States generated a wide variety of research and development. The Russians saw that being exposed to zero gravity conditions in outer space could cause severe deterioration of bone density and muscle mass. They recognized that WBV could be used to simulate gravity. They used WBV machines to help Cosmonauts maintain good levels of bone density and muscle mass. After being in orbit, Russian Cosmonauts were able to return to Earth in nearly the same condition as when they blasted off.
WBV technology has been developing and improving ever since. WBV is now being used all over the world. WBV is known to raise both heart rate and blood oxygen levels. Research also shows that cellulite may be significantly reduced through WBV. Better circulation helps the body to drain toxins and lymphatic waste. This reduces swelling in areas of the body affected by cellulite. WBV is unlike working out on a treadmill. It gives a gentle workout that is not hard on the joints. Ten minutes on a good WBV machine can be like a one-hour workout in the gym.
Courtesy of Wikipedia
WBV and Gravity
WBV can help people who are in good shape as well as people who have gotten out of shape. WBV minimizes stress to the joints and muscles. The big key is that with WBV, gravity does the work. Gravity plays a major role in fitness. The force of gravity stimulates muscle development and builds strength. Because of that, people who can lift more are generally considered stronger than those who can’t lift as much.
Gravity is the force which, normally, keeps people firmly connected to planet Earth. Standing, walking and lifting things require us to resist gravity. Getting out of bed in the morning and standing up are acts of resistance against the force of gravity. The more people move around, the more they are resisting gravity and the fitter they get. Sedentary lifestyles in which people remain seated most of the time, reduce resistance to gravity.
Benefits of WBV
Maintaining muscle strength and cardiovascular health are keys to health as human beings age. As they get older, many people move around less, and this is detrimental to their health. The ability to move around, resisting gravity, is one of the definitive signs that a person is aging well. The inability to move around is a clear signal that a person’s health is declining.
WBV can help in each of the following important areas.
  • WBV effectively increases muscle mass and tones muscles at the same time. Having more muscle enables people to burn more calories, which, of course, leads to weight loss.
  • WBV also improves flexibility, range of motion, balance, and mobility.
  • WBV reduces pain and stiffness from arthritis, fibromyalgia, and other painful ailments.
  • WBV elevates HGH and serotonin while decreasing cortisol (a hormone produced by stress).
  • WBV can help to strengthen muscles after injury, illness, or surgery.
Bone Density

Bone density is a measurement of the amount of calcium and other minerals in a segment of bone. Higher mineral contents indicate higher bone density and strength. As people age, their bone density normally decreases. When that happens, the risk for osteoporosis increases. Numerous studies have shown that WBV can improve bone density. For more information, check the links below.

Whole-body vibration exercise in postmenopausal osteoporosis

Does muscle activation during whole-body vibration induce bone density improvement in postmenopausal women?
How can you try it?
Patients at the Vibrant Life Health Center can get access to the center’s state-of-the-art VibaBody Slimmer machine. The VibaBody Slimmer was specifically designed to help users improve muscle strength and to enhance physical performance. The VibaBody Slimmer uses Oscillating Vibration Technology.
What is Oscillating Vibration Technology (OVT)? First and foremost, it is widely considered the safest form of WBV. Oscillating simply means that it goes back and forth – quickly. Some people use oscillating devices to wax their cars. Other folks use oscillating sanders for woodworking. If you’ve ever refinished wood floors, you may have used an oscillating sander to do that.
The VibaBody Slimmer delivers an oscillating mechanical stimulus that exercises the entire body. The motion is back and forth, very quickly. It’s gentle and effective at the very same time. Almost anyone can enjoy the benefits of WBV!
WBV has been thoroughly tested by Russian cosmonauts! That means it’s especially good for anyone considering space travel in the near future! It’s also excellent for people who have no desire to venture outside of Earth’s atmosphere. Call today to learn more about WBV and other services offered by Vibrant Life Health Center.

This article discusses Whole Body Vibration, a technique for exercising multiple muscle groups using the force of gravity. I’ve provided a brief history of the technique, and I’ve also discussed many of the important benefits that WBV can provide to users.
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At Vibrant Life, we address all of the key elements to add vibrance and vitality to your life. This includes nutrition, chiropractic care, and fitness. If you need to consult with a chiropractor about your neck, back, or any other health concern, please contact our office to set up an appointment.
Courtesy of
Vibrant Life Health Center
Dr. Jon Thomas is a Board Certified Chiropractic Physician. His practice, The Vibrant Life Health Center, is located in the Mandarin section of Jacksonville. His interest in health and fitness started early, and his athletic pursuits have included BMX racing, Professional Snow Skiing, Water Skiing, Baseball, Weightlifting, and Martial Arts. After studying and learning from some of the top health experts throughout the world, Dr. Thomas dedicated his life to helping people of all ages to transform their lives. The objective for each patient is to initiate the body’s healing and to work progressively toward a body that functions optimally. Dr. Thomas is seen regularly on TV on First Coast Living, where he discusses the transformations of his patients. He also speaks at events throughout the community and writes informative articles to improve the health of residents throughout Jacksonville.


  1. I never cease to be amazed at the ways that technology is changing the time tested art of working out.

  2. The science makes lots of sense. It certainly sounds like something that's worth a try.

  3. Now here's a method that can literally shake up your weight-loss and exercise routine. How cool is that! ;D