Budget Plates: Saving Money or False Economy?
So you're looking to buy a vibration plate and go online to check out how much one will set you back. And surprise! You see models costing anything from £150 to around £8,000! Really?|
Unless you own a gym or have six family members who'll be using the plate for eight hours a day, you don't really need to be spending £8,000 on a top gymnasium-quality model. But what about the machines in the £1,500 to £5,000 price range - are they really worth that much?
Or can a plate costing a fraction of that still deliver the goods?
First let's look at what determines the cost of a power plate - the technology and materials used.
A budget model (and we consider that's anything under £500) generally has an oscillating plate - one that tilts side to side (wobbles) at a high rate. These are cheaper to make and require simpler mechanisms to house the motor and plate.
Once you get to plates costing £800 or more, you'll start to see 'vertical vibration' platforms, and higher still, terms such as dual suspension and dampened plates. This type of plate can deliver a more focused type of vibration, and as the manufacturer's claim, work your muscles harder while still being a safe method.
For more on the benefits of 'wobble' verses 'jiggle', please click here.
The exception in this instance are columnless plates. These are less expensive to make and some use vertical vibration platforms. If you're short on space, a columnless model is a good option, but choose a model with upper body straps to work all your muscles. See the Powrx Home Pro 2.0 (see left column) for a good example of this type of plate.
Price verse Results
Never mind the technical stuff - what about the results? After all, this is what you buy one for! From all of the people we've had contact with over the years (getting up to around 250 now), some do get results from the budget plates, but on average it takes longer - up to several weeks longer and anectdotally, fewer inches lost.
Those using vertical vibration on the more expensive models saw better results (more inch loss)... and quicker.
But note, we haven't conducted a specific trial to test this, it's based on user's experience.
However, many who brought cheap didn't necessary regret it. Many said it helped to introduce them to vibration training and once they got enthusiastic, they decided to spend more and upgrade their plates.
Another important point to consider is customer service. What if something goes wrong with your plate?
We've heard cases of some sellers of budget plates being a right pain in the 'you know what' to deal with. They were difficult to get hold of, and some can be reluctant to replace a faulty plate.
Of course it's true that you get what you pay for, but if your machine develops a fault within the warranty period, you're entitled to get it repaired or replaced. What you tend to find with retailers of the lower-priced models is that this process can take weeks.
This wouldn't/ shouldn't happen with a retailer that's sold you a two-grand plate!.
1. If you've not tried vibration training, try one out first either in a gym, saloon or borrow your friends. Decide whether you like this short of training before you buy a plate.
2. If you don't like them and wouldn't enjoy the training, then don't buy one - pretty obvious really :0)
3. If you like it and think you'll use one on a regular basis and can afford it, go for a model around the £800 to £1,500 mark. You'll get a great (and reliable) model and you will see results.
4. If you like it, but can't justify spending big, try one of the models on this site in the £300 to £500 ball park if you can. For this, you'll get a pretty good machine and still see results.
5. If spending under £300 don't expect miracles - but you can still see improvements. If later you can afford to upgrade and you're still happy to devote time to WBV, move up to the next level and see better results.
You can see all the plates we've tried and given star-ratings,
listed in price order here.