Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab
Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab
Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab
Health Club Management

Health Club Management

Follow Health Club Management on Twitter Like Health Club Management on Facebook Join the discussion with Health Club Management on LinkedIn Follow Health Club Management on Instagram
UNITING THE WORLD OF FITNESS
Get the latest news, jobs and features in your inbox
Health Club Management

Health Club Management

features

Training trends: What a drag

Currently a US trend, mainly among elite athletes, is parachute training something that could filter down to the mainstream in health clubs globally? Kath Hudson reports

By Kath Hudson | Published in Health Club Management 2019 issue 6
Parachute training is mainly used to develop explosive power for sprinting, but can give distance runners a psychological edge, as they won’t feel disheartened if they hit wind resistance during an event / SHUTTERSTOCK / JACOB LUND
Parachute training is mainly used to develop explosive power for sprinting, but can give distance runners a psychological edge, as they won’t feel disheartened if they hit wind resistance during an event / SHUTTERSTOCK / JACOB LUND

Reported to feel like running with a 20lb bag on your back, parachute training is a majorly effective workout, which offers a double whammy of resistance and cardiovascular training – normally done at intervals.

It involves running with a small parachute strapped around your waist – once you pick up speed the parachute deploys, causing drag, which makes running feel as though you’re wading through mud.

Then, when the parachute is detached mid-run, it sends you sprinting into overdrive, making the average runner feel free, light, liberated, powerful and faster than ever before.

Popular with Olympic track runners, football players, basketball and baseball players, parachute workouts are designed to improve speed, power, strength and explosive power. The resistance provided by the parachute – there are different sizes – helps to strengthen legs and core.

The explosiveness of a parachute workout builds the fast twitch muscle fibres, leading to faster run times and improved vertical jumping ability.

A gruelling workout, it also gets the heart rate up and burns fat, so combining it with intervals offers an extremely effective workout.

Getting it right
Sounds fun? There are a few things to watch out for. Firstly, it can be technical and there are reports that it can cause problems with technique and sprinting biometrics, so should only be used by experienced athletes. London based PT, Murat Gecmen of FitInFitness sometimes uses parachute training with his regular one-to-one clients, but agrees you need to be a decent runner before you try it.

“You have to lift yourself up on your toes, get a really good push-off and accelerate quickly, so the parachute deploys and creates resistance,” he says. “If you’re flat footed or have a small foot strike, then the parachute might not deploy, plus you’ll be more prone to injury.

“Sometimes the parachute can push you off course, so you need to be strong enough to cope with a change of direction, but if you can manage to contol it, then it will definitely activate more muscles.”

Centre of attention
There are practical issues with outdoor parachute training, including having a large enough space to do it. It requires either an appropriate outdoor space in a health club – high-end operator Aspria offers parachute workouts in specially fitted-out outdoor areas, for example – or a running track, park or beach. Ideally a place without too many people around.

“I have to make sure the area’s clear before runners set off, or they could sweep people up,” says Gecman. “And if there are dogs around, they chase the parachute!

“It’s not something you see every day, so people always stare, although I’ve found this to be good marketing,” he says. “My clients want something different, so it’s good training, at the same time as being fun. Parachute training is a niche methodology and likely to stay that way, but niche activities have appeal for avid trainers.”

Running specialist, Lou Nicholettos, founder of The Cornish Physio, says the effects are very specific: “While parachute training can be effective for sprinting, as a way of increasing load, I can’t see there being great benefits for distance runners – certainly none that can’t be more easily achieved using a weighted vest or anti-gravity running.”

Possibly not, but Gecman argues that for people who like running, it’s fun, motivating and a great thing to do outside in the sunshine. Also there’s the argument that it can give middle- and long-distance runners a psychological edge, as they won’t feel disheartened if they hit wind resistance during an event. For those who do a lot of running, it adds interest and motivation. And for those who love running, it means that they don’t have to miss a run in order to do some strength training.

Indoor parachute training
The main drawback to parachute training is that it can’t easily be done in a health club setting. Or can it? Technogym is currently in the process of patenting technology which incorporates parachute training into its new Skillrun treadmill. This reproduces the feeling of parachute training in optimised conditions.

The resistance starts at null, but kicks in as the runner gathers speed and the “parachute” catches. Users can also choose the size of their parachute on the Skillrun to make it easier or more challenging.

Technogym’s Craig Swyer says this functionality was added in response to operator demand. “Operators told us that the Skillmill, our non-motorised treadmill, was a great offering for something different, but there was still a core market out there for traditional running for people who want a treadmill to do quick and easy intervals,” he says.

“This challenged us to reimagine the Skillmill. It already had a sled function, but we improved the way that function works so that it imitated real sled training more closely. Then we looked around at what else we could incorporate that would engage traditional runners and give them added results and motivation.

Parachute training is still in its infancy in the UK,” he explains, “but it’s popular in North America –especially at universities and with NFL teams.”

Initially Technogym thought the parachute training would only appeal to facilities with a performance angle, such as Team GB and the top sports universities, however Swyer says it’s popular when it comes to engaging goal-orientated members. “Both Nuffield Health and London boutique Sweat It are offering successful treadmill classes which utilise the parachute function and are using it as a point of differentiation,” he says.

The Skillrun has been pre-programmed with three user-friendly programmes, which include coaching tips, intervals and video tutorials. They’re between 33 and 45 minutes long and promise better results than just running on the treadmill for this length of time, as they engage more muscles. Swyer says this also enhances motivation.

So, will parachute training go mainstream? Possibly not, but that doesn’t mean it won’t appeal to a lot of people and it could work well for clubs looking to offer something a bit different to get members motivated.

It’s also an effective form of accommodating resistance, as the parachute exerts more drag the faster the runner goes, so it’s a very effective way to train.

Murat Gecmen, FitInFitness
"My clients want something different, so it’s good training, at the same time as being fun" - Murat Gecmen, FitInFitness
Parachute training offers accommodating resistance – the faster you run, the harder it resists – which is hard to achieve and optimises training time. / PHOTO: COURTESY of ASPRIA
Parachute training offers accommodating resistance – the faster you run, the harder it resists – which is hard to achieve and optimises training time. / PHOTO: COURTESY of ASPRIA
Technogym’s Skillrun has been adapted to offer both sled and parachute training modes
Technogym’s Skillrun has been adapted to offer both sled and parachute training modes
http://www.leisureopportunities.com/images/imagesX/691099_285385.jpg
Reported to feel like running with a 20lb bag on your bag, parachute training is a very effective workout. Could it go mainstream?
People
HCM people

Gita Sjahrir

Founder, R-FITNESS
We became the first boutique fitness brand in all of Southeast Asia to ever raise venture capital backing. This was positive for the industry as it signalled that the industry had growth potential
People
HCM people

José Teixeira

SC Fitness, Portugal: head of customer experience
People often assume that those who pay more stay longer, but we don’t see this. What we see is that if you have PT you stay longer because you use more, not because you pay more
People
My vision, based on my own personal experience, would be for physical activity to become the norm – not something you have to make an effort to do, but something you just go ‘yeah, that’s part of my everyday life’
Features
Circuits
Circuits are a powerful way to deliver a controlled and effective workout to people of a range of abilities in a short time frame. HCM reviews some of the leading systems
Features
Supplier showcase
With the first of a planned 105 clubs across the UK and Ireland up and running, UFC GYM turned to the expertise of DFC to ensure a simpler membership process for members
Features
IHRSA Update
IHRSA’s Kristen Walsh shares highlights from The 2019 IHRSA Health Club Consumer Report into the US fitness market, as well as giving universal advice about how to stay relevant
Features
Supplier showcase
Northumbria University has partnered with Matrix Fitness to fit out its newly refurbished sports centre and gym, using the latest in fitness technology to motivate members
Features
Group exercise
Does your fitness studio offer the antidote to tech-driven loneliness?
Features
Supplier showcase
Pulse Fitness has installed a premium fitness facility at The University of Liverpool, fitting the space with its state-of-the-art equipment to appeal to staff and students alike
Features
feature
As ukactive pushes for government to focus on physical activity for healthcare, Brad Tucker, managing director at Premier Global NASM, explains how the training provider is evolving its programmes to help fitness professionals deliver person-centred, holistic health solutions
Features
Latest News
Mid-market health club operator Total Fitness has acquired Pro-Fit Personal Training. The deal follows a ...
Latest News
PureGym is set to become the second largest fitness operator in Europe, after revealing plans ...
Latest News
The Glass House Retreat, a new eco-friendly health and wellness retreat, has opened in Bulphan, ...
Latest News
A large-scale study on genetics has shown that being more physically active reduces the risk ...
Latest News
The Gym Group has confirmed plans to roll out a new small box format in ...
Latest News
Representatives from the three main political parties have backed the view that physical activity has ...
Latest News
Life Leisure is expanding its facility portfolio with the launch of an independent boutique fitness ...
Latest News
Almost half of children and young people (46.8 per cent) in England are doing the ...
Job search
POST YOUR JOB
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Gympass expands in Ireland with flagship operator Gym Plus
Gympass, a leader in corporate fitness sales, has expanded its network to Ireland following a new partnership with Gym Plus.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: GLL chooses Ethitec’s Tiara9 system for its exercise-based public health referral schemes
The Tiara9 system has been selected by leisure trust, GLL, to support the nationwide rollout of its Healthwise GP referral programme.
Video Gallery
DFC: We do more...
DFC
DFC are a leading direct debit collection company, providing cash flow solutions to happy clients from all over the UK. Read more
More videos:
Company profiles
Company profile: Legend Club Management Systems (UK) Ltd
Legend provides the leading software solution for driving improvements in leisure operations. We deliver savings ...
Company profiles
Company profile: EZ-Runner Systems Ltd
With over 600 clients worldwide in Spa, Golf, Health Club, Hotel and Kids Play Leisure, ...
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Trade associations
International SPA Association - iSPA: Trade associations
Skincare
Comfort Zone - Davines S.p.A: Skincare
Audio visual
Hutchison Technologies: Audio visual
Professional services
Deloitte UK: Professional services
Locking solutions
Ojmar: Locking solutions
Fitness software
Go Do.Fitness: Fitness software
Fitness equipment
Physical Company Ltd: Fitness equipment
Lockers/interior design
Crown Sports Lockers: Lockers/interior design
Spa software
SpaBooker: Spa software
Exercise equipment
Eleiko Sport AB: Exercise equipment
Property & Tenders
Diary dates
21-23 Jan 2020
Harrogate Convention Centre, Harrogate, United Kingdom
Diary dates
28-30 Jan 2020
Ericsson Exhibition Hall, Ricoh Arena, Coventry, United Kingdom
Diary dates
29-30 Jan 2020
Holiday Inn San Francisco-Golden Gateway, San Francisco, United States
Diary dates
23-25 Mar 2020
Hilton, Barcelona, Spain
Diary dates
25-26 Mar 2020
Eastwood Hall, Nottingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
19-24 Apr 2020
tbc, Beijing, China
Diary dates
04 Jun 2020
Marriott Forest of Arden Hotel & Country Club, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
10-27 Jun 2020
tbc, Pinggu, China
Diary dates
13 Jun 2020
Worldwide, Various,
Diary dates
17-18 Jun 2020
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2020
Loews Coronado Bay Resort, Coronado, United States
Diary dates
30-31 Oct 2020
NEC, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates

features

Training trends: What a drag

Currently a US trend, mainly among elite athletes, is parachute training something that could filter down to the mainstream in health clubs globally? Kath Hudson reports

By Kath Hudson | Published in Health Club Management 2019 issue 6
Parachute training is mainly used to develop explosive power for sprinting, but can give distance runners a psychological edge, as they won’t feel disheartened if they hit wind resistance during an event / SHUTTERSTOCK / JACOB LUND
Parachute training is mainly used to develop explosive power for sprinting, but can give distance runners a psychological edge, as they won’t feel disheartened if they hit wind resistance during an event / SHUTTERSTOCK / JACOB LUND

Reported to feel like running with a 20lb bag on your back, parachute training is a majorly effective workout, which offers a double whammy of resistance and cardiovascular training – normally done at intervals.

It involves running with a small parachute strapped around your waist – once you pick up speed the parachute deploys, causing drag, which makes running feel as though you’re wading through mud.

Then, when the parachute is detached mid-run, it sends you sprinting into overdrive, making the average runner feel free, light, liberated, powerful and faster than ever before.

Popular with Olympic track runners, football players, basketball and baseball players, parachute workouts are designed to improve speed, power, strength and explosive power. The resistance provided by the parachute – there are different sizes – helps to strengthen legs and core.

The explosiveness of a parachute workout builds the fast twitch muscle fibres, leading to faster run times and improved vertical jumping ability.

A gruelling workout, it also gets the heart rate up and burns fat, so combining it with intervals offers an extremely effective workout.

Getting it right
Sounds fun? There are a few things to watch out for. Firstly, it can be technical and there are reports that it can cause problems with technique and sprinting biometrics, so should only be used by experienced athletes. London based PT, Murat Gecmen of FitInFitness sometimes uses parachute training with his regular one-to-one clients, but agrees you need to be a decent runner before you try it.

“You have to lift yourself up on your toes, get a really good push-off and accelerate quickly, so the parachute deploys and creates resistance,” he says. “If you’re flat footed or have a small foot strike, then the parachute might not deploy, plus you’ll be more prone to injury.

“Sometimes the parachute can push you off course, so you need to be strong enough to cope with a change of direction, but if you can manage to contol it, then it will definitely activate more muscles.”

Centre of attention
There are practical issues with outdoor parachute training, including having a large enough space to do it. It requires either an appropriate outdoor space in a health club – high-end operator Aspria offers parachute workouts in specially fitted-out outdoor areas, for example – or a running track, park or beach. Ideally a place without too many people around.

“I have to make sure the area’s clear before runners set off, or they could sweep people up,” says Gecman. “And if there are dogs around, they chase the parachute!

“It’s not something you see every day, so people always stare, although I’ve found this to be good marketing,” he says. “My clients want something different, so it’s good training, at the same time as being fun. Parachute training is a niche methodology and likely to stay that way, but niche activities have appeal for avid trainers.”

Running specialist, Lou Nicholettos, founder of The Cornish Physio, says the effects are very specific: “While parachute training can be effective for sprinting, as a way of increasing load, I can’t see there being great benefits for distance runners – certainly none that can’t be more easily achieved using a weighted vest or anti-gravity running.”

Possibly not, but Gecman argues that for people who like running, it’s fun, motivating and a great thing to do outside in the sunshine. Also there’s the argument that it can give middle- and long-distance runners a psychological edge, as they won’t feel disheartened if they hit wind resistance during an event. For those who do a lot of running, it adds interest and motivation. And for those who love running, it means that they don’t have to miss a run in order to do some strength training.

Indoor parachute training
The main drawback to parachute training is that it can’t easily be done in a health club setting. Or can it? Technogym is currently in the process of patenting technology which incorporates parachute training into its new Skillrun treadmill. This reproduces the feeling of parachute training in optimised conditions.

The resistance starts at null, but kicks in as the runner gathers speed and the “parachute” catches. Users can also choose the size of their parachute on the Skillrun to make it easier or more challenging.

Technogym’s Craig Swyer says this functionality was added in response to operator demand. “Operators told us that the Skillmill, our non-motorised treadmill, was a great offering for something different, but there was still a core market out there for traditional running for people who want a treadmill to do quick and easy intervals,” he says.

“This challenged us to reimagine the Skillmill. It already had a sled function, but we improved the way that function works so that it imitated real sled training more closely. Then we looked around at what else we could incorporate that would engage traditional runners and give them added results and motivation.

Parachute training is still in its infancy in the UK,” he explains, “but it’s popular in North America –especially at universities and with NFL teams.”

Initially Technogym thought the parachute training would only appeal to facilities with a performance angle, such as Team GB and the top sports universities, however Swyer says it’s popular when it comes to engaging goal-orientated members. “Both Nuffield Health and London boutique Sweat It are offering successful treadmill classes which utilise the parachute function and are using it as a point of differentiation,” he says.

The Skillrun has been pre-programmed with three user-friendly programmes, which include coaching tips, intervals and video tutorials. They’re between 33 and 45 minutes long and promise better results than just running on the treadmill for this length of time, as they engage more muscles. Swyer says this also enhances motivation.

So, will parachute training go mainstream? Possibly not, but that doesn’t mean it won’t appeal to a lot of people and it could work well for clubs looking to offer something a bit different to get members motivated.

It’s also an effective form of accommodating resistance, as the parachute exerts more drag the faster the runner goes, so it’s a very effective way to train.

Murat Gecmen, FitInFitness
"My clients want something different, so it’s good training, at the same time as being fun" - Murat Gecmen, FitInFitness
Parachute training offers accommodating resistance – the faster you run, the harder it resists – which is hard to achieve and optimises training time. / PHOTO: COURTESY of ASPRIA
Parachute training offers accommodating resistance – the faster you run, the harder it resists – which is hard to achieve and optimises training time. / PHOTO: COURTESY of ASPRIA
Technogym’s Skillrun has been adapted to offer both sled and parachute training modes
Technogym’s Skillrun has been adapted to offer both sled and parachute training modes
http://www.leisureopportunities.com/images/imagesX/691099_285385.jpg
Reported to feel like running with a 20lb bag on your bag, parachute training is a very effective workout. Could it go mainstream?
Latest News
Mid-market health club operator Total Fitness has acquired Pro-Fit Personal Training. The deal follows a ...
Latest News
PureGym is set to become the second largest fitness operator in Europe, after revealing plans ...
Latest News
The Glass House Retreat, a new eco-friendly health and wellness retreat, has opened in Bulphan, ...
Latest News
A large-scale study on genetics has shown that being more physically active reduces the risk ...
Latest News
The Gym Group has confirmed plans to roll out a new small box format in ...
Latest News
Representatives from the three main political parties have backed the view that physical activity has ...
Latest News
Life Leisure is expanding its facility portfolio with the launch of an independent boutique fitness ...
Latest News
Almost half of children and young people (46.8 per cent) in England are doing the ...
Latest News
A local fitness operator with 11 clubs in Chicago, US, is looking to muscle in ...
Latest News
Fitness industry veteran Nick Coutts has been appointed chair of Danish fitness tech firm Motosumo. ...
Latest News
The improvements in health and wellbeing associated with exercise referral schemes aren’t as large as ...
Job search
POST YOUR JOB
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Gympass expands in Ireland with flagship operator Gym Plus
Gympass, a leader in corporate fitness sales, has expanded its network to Ireland following a new partnership with Gym Plus.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: GLL chooses Ethitec’s Tiara9 system for its exercise-based public health referral schemes
The Tiara9 system has been selected by leisure trust, GLL, to support the nationwide rollout of its Healthwise GP referral programme.
Video Gallery
DFC: We do more...
DFC
DFC are a leading direct debit collection company, providing cash flow solutions to happy clients from all over the UK. Read more
More videos:
Company profiles
Company profile: Legend Club Management Systems (UK) Ltd
Legend provides the leading software solution for driving improvements in leisure operations. We deliver savings ...
Company profiles
Company profile: EZ-Runner Systems Ltd
With over 600 clients worldwide in Spa, Golf, Health Club, Hotel and Kids Play Leisure, ...
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Trade associations
International SPA Association - iSPA: Trade associations
Skincare
Comfort Zone - Davines S.p.A: Skincare
Audio visual
Hutchison Technologies: Audio visual
Professional services
Deloitte UK: Professional services
Locking solutions
Ojmar: Locking solutions
Fitness software
Go Do.Fitness: Fitness software
Fitness equipment
Physical Company Ltd: Fitness equipment
Lockers/interior design
Crown Sports Lockers: Lockers/interior design
Spa software
SpaBooker: Spa software
Exercise equipment
Eleiko Sport AB: Exercise equipment
Property & Tenders
Diary dates
21-23 Jan 2020
Harrogate Convention Centre, Harrogate, United Kingdom
Diary dates
28-30 Jan 2020
Ericsson Exhibition Hall, Ricoh Arena, Coventry, United Kingdom
Diary dates
29-30 Jan 2020
Holiday Inn San Francisco-Golden Gateway, San Francisco, United States
Diary dates
23-25 Mar 2020
Hilton, Barcelona, Spain
Diary dates
25-26 Mar 2020
Eastwood Hall, Nottingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
19-24 Apr 2020
tbc, Beijing, China
Diary dates
04 Jun 2020
Marriott Forest of Arden Hotel & Country Club, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
10-27 Jun 2020
tbc, Pinggu, China
Diary dates
13 Jun 2020
Worldwide, Various,
Diary dates
17-18 Jun 2020
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2020
Loews Coronado Bay Resort, Coronado, United States
Diary dates
30-31 Oct 2020
NEC, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
Search news, features & products:
Find a supplier:
Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab
Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab