The Pulley Tower Unit – The primary piece of GYROTONIC® equipment

The Pulley Tower unit is the primary piece of equipment

The Gyrotonic Pulley Tower unitThis piece of equipment is how all trainers begin their GYROTONIC® education. It's the root of the whole system. It's an amazing piece of exercise equipment that can be used in a nearly endless variety of ways. In the early days of me being a trainer when clients would ask how many exercises you could do on the Pulley Tower, I would say 200-300. Now, I have no idea. I don't think anyone actually knows how many exercises are possible on the pulley tower!

The exercises on the Pulley Tower are organized into "families", each family of exercises using the same essential setup. In all the families there are exercises for people of any level of fitness. In each session I'll choose from the large volume of exercises in each family to build a workout that is both appropriate for you and challenging.

Each of these videos below show only a fraction of what can be done in each family.

The Handle Series

The Handle Series uses the handles, obviously. The handles guide your motion as you move in many various ways through the spinal ranges of motion. Spinal movement is the primary focus but how you use your arms allows you to also focus on the shoulders or wrists. You can sit facing the handles, facing sideways or facing away from the handles. But you can also kneel, stand, lunge, squat or balance.

The Hamstring Series

If you've got tight hamstrings, hip flexors or hip joints, you will love this series. The cables are connected at your feet with an appropriate amount of weight and you'll move your legs through all their ranges of motion. Some exercises emphasize a particular range of motion. For example the scissors exercise primarily uses hip extension. Others use multiple ranges of motion, blending hip extension with internal and external rotations. There are even exercises that engage spinal ranges of motion or focus on your core.

The Upper Body Series

The Upper Body Series isn't really a single series. There's two big variations, using the upper straps or the lower straps. In the handle series the handles guide your arm movement but with your hands in the straps your possibilities for movement are much greater. You once again use all the spinal rages of motion and can mix it up with various sitting, kneeling and standing positions.

The Legwork Series

The Legwork Series is a variety of exercises done in multiple positions. On the bench on or the floor you could be seated facing the tower or facing sideways to the tower. You could be face down or on your back.The primary foci of the Legwork series are hip and knee mobility as well as the omnipresent core strengthening. One of the key features of this series are exercises that directly strengthen the rotators of the hip joints. I can't think of another exercise system that specifically targets the rotators with resistance.

Upper Body Opening

The shoulder joint is the most complex joint in your body. It has more and larger ranges of motion than any other. As many people also know, the shoulders can be tight, unstable or get injured. The Upper Body Opening series stretches and strengthens the shoulders with a focus on eccentric contraction, the muscles remaining active and engaged while the joint increase their ranges of motion. This keeps the shoulders strong and supple, allowing you to enjoy golf, tennis, pickleball, windsurfing and your basic activities of daily living.

These are the meaty parts of the work on the Pulley Tower

There is even more material, exercises that don't fit neatly into one of these families. And of course direct abdominal strengthening exercises, which are great but not so numerous. The the heavy work of strengthening your core is the Ladder's forte.

The main families of exercises work your body in a wide variety of ways. And within each family of exercises there's a wide variety of possible motions and positions. This variety is like one of those massive tool boxes you see at a high end auto repair place. As a trainer watches you moving, they can think about what they want to do next within that workout and even plan out for the next several workouts, planning progressions.

You can never be bored doing Gyrotonic training. There's just too much material.

And this is just the Pulley Tower, without touching the Wingmaster at all. That a whole other magical beast.

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