by Ellington Darden, Ph.D.
The International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association's (IHRSA) annual trade show was held in San Diego, California, on March 10-14, 2010. Among the 382 companies displaying their new fitness products was X-Force of Stockholm, Sweden.
X-Force manufactures strength-training machines that have tilting weight stacks. By tilting the weight stack to 45 degrees on the positive motion, an X-Force machine supplies a 40-percent heavier negative stroke. With a heavier negative stroke, a trainee now has the power to make a deeper inroad into his starting level of strength . . . which ultimately leads to better results.
With X-Force, a trainee can apply "heavy negatives" under safer conditions and with more consistent control, compared to traditional methods of having spotters help do the lifting and lowering. Now, an advanced trainee, or even a novice – once he or she gets the hang of each machine – has solo control of the all-important negative or eccentric factor.
Last year at IHRSA 2009, attendees were interested and liked X-Force, but no one bought. This year was different.
X-Force took orders in the United States for 49 machines . . . and that does not include four lines of machines that were ordered from a club owner in New Zealand. And, many more machines than the combined totals above have already been sold in Europe. In fact, two European clubs have taken delivery on their equipment and they've reported nothing but outstanding results from their involved members.
So, X-Force scored BIG in San Diego and the future is THUMBS-UP.
X-Force will be displaying all their machines at FIBO, which will take place again this year in Essen, Germany, April 22-25, 2010. I'll be attending the trade show and will post a report about it on this website.
In the meantime, below is a roundup of photos from IHRSA 2010.
This photo was taken minutes before the X-Force display was opened for IHRSA attendees on March 11, 2010. The display contained 29 X-Force machines.
Luke Carlson performs an intense set on the X-Force Leg Press. Luke owns Discover Strength Personal Fitness Center in Plymouth, MN.
Left table: Big Jim Flanagan, a longtime strength-training professional, talks with Debbie Lee of the Gainesville Health & Fitness Center. Behind them: Joe Cirulli, Owner of the Gainesville Health & Fitness Center, discusses business with Jim Teatum of Sportwall International. Right table: Mats Thulin (seated), CEO of X-Force, examines a floor plan for two interested buyers, as Dr. Bjorn Alber, of X-Force, smiles his approval.
Note: The Gainesville Health & Fitness Center in Gainesville, FL, will be getting a complete line of 14 X-Force machines in June of 2010. I'll be conducting six months of eccentric training with more than 100 research subjects at Cirulli's club.
Bjorn Alber, a sportsmedicine physician for X-Force, urges an athlete to get one more rep on the Pec Seated Press.
Standing right: Roger Schwab, President of the Mainline Health & Fitness Center in Bryn Mawr, PA, shares an adventure with Alexander Hook, an exercise physiologist for X-Force. Schwab's Mainline club will soon have a line of X-Force machines.
David Landau of Advanced Exercise in Miami, FL, hits the X-Force Deltoid Lift with serious focus.
Another shot of David Landau, who is a frequent contributor to the discussion forum, showing precision form on the X-Force Pec Arm Cross.
Niclas Orrje, X-Force's legal advisor, offers his assistance to a trainee on the leg press. The ergonomically designed footplate removes much of the tension on the knees that normally occurs during this exercise.
Using 140 pounds on the X-Force Pec Angled Press is difficult for most women to perform, but Terri Gutierrez handles it with ease. I trained Terri during the early 1980s at the Nautilus Research Center in Lake Helen, FL.
The X-Force Lat Back Pull provides easy-grip rotating handles for supination, pronation, or neutral positioning of the hands.
Bruce Pechman of Solana Beach, CA, helped pump his arms by using the X-Force Biceps and Triceps machines. Not bad for a guy who's 54-years old.
Ellington Darden discusses X-Force with Anna Anka. In 1993, Anna was Miss Hawaiian Tropic of Sweden.