Are you curious about what machines we offer that other gyms may not? While we offer far more than what you'll read about below, here are some of our gym "unicorns" - machines or equipment you'll be pleasantly surprised to find and will certainly enjoy taking advantage of.
Between our two well-stocked gym locations, you are certain to find what you need to keep your workouts fun, interesting, and productive time and time again!
Lots of gyms max out at 100 lb dumbbell sets. We reject that limit - for many of our members, 100 lbs just doesn't cut it! To support your free weight strength gains, we offer you 105 lb - 130 lb dumbbell sets at both our locations.
We also offer as light as 2lbs! There is a set for everybody here, no matter how long you've been training. Go light or go heavy, it's all up to you.
Your first stop for an insane quad pump and pain-free squats, available in our Stony Plain location, should be the belt squat! The belt squat is an excellent alternative for anybody who experiences upper body or spinal pain when squatting. Why? Because with this machine, all the weight gets loaded onto your lower body and hips.
You load your weights, secure the belt around your waist so that it rests on your lower spine, then release the weights and push through your squat sets. You'll strengthen your whole lower body without putting any pressure on your upper body. This exercise is great for building strength in your knees as well. All pros, no cons.
Athletes - don't shy away from the leg and hip abductor/adductor machine! Next time you're in our Stony Plain location, take a seat and strengthen your inner and outer thighs... and your core! did you know? Your 'core' extends well beyond your abdominal muscles; it actually encompasses all the muscles used to stabilize your torso. Of course, this includes your hip abductor and adductor muscles!
Strengthening your abductor muscles is a great way to improve flexibility and firm up your thighs and butt. And, having strong adductor muscles creates greater day-to-day stability while also supporting you through more explosive movements, for example, sprinting.
Want to improve your balance, athletic performance, ankle strength and stability, AND grow wicked strong calf muscles? Try our standing calf raise machine, available in our Stony Plain gym! Using this machine also improves your ability to 'plantarflex': the act of exerting pressure through the foot, into the ground. If you're a runner or a strength or power athlete, training your calves with this machine creates a stronger foundation for all other standing exercises. You'll also reduce your risk of ankle sprains!
We are not all blessed with magnificent calf muscles (though, some of you definitely are! High five for great genetics) but we can all grow our lower legs to functional perfection with some consistent effort!
Activate most of your lower body - especially your quadriceps femoris! - and your core stabilizer muscles, including your abdominal muscles and the erector spinae (spinal supporting muscles) using the hack squat. The machine is set to a 45 degree angle, which helps take the load off your joints while you exercise. If you're working up to a stronger squat, the hack squat is something you'll want to take advantage of to build your strength!
Load the machine with appropriate weights, then position your feet slightly closer than shoulder-width apart. Angle your knees and feet slightly outward. After you grab the handles and release the weights, brace your core and keep your spine neutral while bringing your hips parallel (or slightly farther than parallel) with your knees. Squeeze your glutes to maximize glute activation, and push through your feet to complete the movement!
The leg press is a wonderful beginner-friendly machine, great for isolating your legs without requiring balance. With the leg press, no stabilization is required! Because you're working from a seated position and the plate you brace against has a fixed path of motion, you can load up your legs with more weight than what you can reasonably squat. Using the leg press is a great way to develop your quadriceps muscles.
By angling your feet and knees slightly outward and scooching your feet higher up the brace plate, you can push through your heels to more specifically target your glutes. Or, you can try unilateral (single-leg) presses for major gains!
Isolate your shoulders, build some awe-inspiring deltoids, increase your shoulder mobility, AND improve your joint stability with the lateral raise machine. Find one in our Spruce Grove location! This machine will definitely challenge you.
Did you know? Your delts are made up of three "heads": the anterior, lateral, and posterior deltoid heads. The lateral raise machine targets and strengthens all three at once! To really knock yourself out on upper body day, try slowing down your reps and pausing at the top.
Strong shoulders are necessary for maintaining great posture and for lifting and carrying as part of your daily life... but they also look damn good. If you're aiming for a noticeably fit physique with stronger, wider shoulder, pay special attention to your delts by using this machine to isolate them.
Set fire to your rectus abdominus muscles - also known as your "six pack muscles" - with the ab crunch machine. We've got one of these bad boys in Stony Plain. Let's face it, regular crunches are pretty bland. Sure, they get the job done, but in terms of load, you are limited to your body weight and any weights you can comfortably hold while wiggling around on the floor. With the ab crunch machine, however, you can load weights to specifically target and strengthen your rectus abdominus AND your obliques.
While doing floor ab work, many people use incorrect form and end up injuring their lower backs. This machine provides you with an alternative: achieve great range of motion without compromising stability and form, leading to a lower risk of injury. For beginners, using an ab crunch routine with light weight is a great way to wake up and strengthen your abs.
Try activating your abs at the start of your workout - once the muscles are fired up, they will remain active throughout other movements that call on your core for support.
Looking for something comprehensive for chest day? Try our plate-loaded chest press - you'll mainly target your pectorals, but your triceps and deltoids will get themselves involved too. Chest presses are one of the best exercises for building upper body strength.
Like the lateral raise machine, the plate-loaded shoulder press machine attacks your deltoids. In addition to working your delts, this exercise also strengthens your triceps. Because the machine (like most) allows for a fixed pattern of motion, you don't need to worry about where you are in space at all times, the way you would with free weights. When using a machine, you can focus entirely on exerting force and completing the motion.
A level up from the familiar cable machine lateral pull-downs, a plate-loaded lateral pull-down machine allows you to isolate each side of your body using isolateral movement arms. If you have a weaker side, the independently-moving arms of the machine force your weaker side to work harder and keep up with your dominant side! This helps you achieve a more symmetrical physique while making some major back strength gains. Definitely make use of this unique machine.
Just like the plate-loaded lateral pull-down machine, the plate-loaded row machine is equipped with iso-lateral movement arms. Essential for a great "PULL" day, plate-loaded rows train your back muscles and biceps simultaneously. Again, you will immediately notice if you've got a weaker side, and you can use this machine to your strength-building advantage!
Using a triceps extension machine is great because it forces you to isolate the triceps - no "cheating" or otherwise unintended support from other muscle groups (though, your anconeus is activated as a secondary muscle)! Your triceps are actually each made up of three "heads": the lateral head, the long head, and the medial head!
During triceps extensions, these three heads contract to extend the elbow joint, bracing against the weight you're moving. Using a triceps extension machine is also great because you'll be met with continuous resistance throughout the entire motion. You'll find the triceps extension machine in our Spruce Grove gym.
The most obvious benefit to using the bicep/arm curl machine is getting strong, sculpted upper arms while protecting your wrists and elbows from injury. As the name implies, this machine aggressively targets your biceps. This curl machine is iso-lateral, meaning you can target each bicep individually and build symmetrical strength by strengthening your weaker side. Try using this machine as a finisher during your next visit to our Spruce Grove gym!
The incline Lever Row machine primarily targets your lower back muscles and your lats, but also activates the chest, your rotator cuff muscles, forearms, and biceps. You'll also use your hip adductors and triceps to stabilize yourself during this exercise. We have this machine at both our Stony Plain and Spruce Grove locations.
This machine supports your chest while you exercise which prevents unnecessary body motion and better isolates the muscles you're actually trying to target. Adjust your grip to place more emphasis on different muscles: try underhand to increase elbow flexion and target your biceps, overhand to target your delts and upper back, or a neutral grip to relieve elbow stress throughout your movements.