Lilian Dikmans VersaClimber workout
VersaClimber workout / Lilian Dikmans

When it comes to fitness ‘machines’, I’m always a bit skeptical. They can limit your natural range of movement, which I don’t really like. I’d prefer to do pushups or bench press with free weights than use a bench press machine.

However, some machines can help to step up your fitness. The rower and assault bike are two cardio machines that I often use during circuit training. Since they also incorporate resistance elements, they can be brutal. But effective.

VersaClimber benefits

Last month, I discovered a new cardio machine. The VersaClimber. It’s a cardio machine that mimics a vertical climbing motion. Kind of like a never-ending ladder, with resistance so it’s harder to climb. It might sound like a laugh, but after trying it out I can report that it’s no joke.

NBA legend LeBron James has been using them for years as part of his training regime. For athletes, the main draw card is that it provides a full body cardio workout with zero impact on your joints.

I tried out the Versaclimber at Rise Nation. Launching in West Hollywood in the United States, Rise Nation now has studios in Cleveland, Miami, Dallas and recently opened its first Australian studio in Melbourne. The studio offers a 30-minute, high intensity interval workout purely on a VersaClimber.

Throughout the class, you use the machine in every possible way. The instructor also gives you cues to help position your body to get the best results. From short, fast strides to longer, slower ones with more resistance, I was sweating profusely after just 10 minutes. Granted, I pushed myself hard. Which is easy to do when the music is loud and the studio is dark. You can just zone out and get it done.

I was sore the next day. Especially in my glutes, which is always a win. I would definitely recommend it.

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