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Taking It To the Next Level: An Elite Athlete Discovers Vibration Training

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New Zealand personal trainer and qualified kettlebell instructor Teneka Hyndman was recently awarded First Place, “Novice Figure Short”, at the NZFBB National Bodybuilding Championships and Second Place at the NABBA National Amateur Bodybuilding Championships.

Teneka’s entry into the world of fitness and bodybuilding began in 1999 with her desire to train for competitive dance aerobics. Needing to improve her strength, she entered into weight training and found a real passion for it. Reshaping her body and completing a physical education degree, she became a Les Mills Gym instructor and, within a year, a highly sought after personal trainer. She entered into her first bodybuilding competition in 2001 and winning her class, Teneka, 29, has competed the past four years with 2008 being her most successful. With a hardcore attitude about exercise Teneka has continually updated her skills and qualifications, becoming a qualified kettlebell trainer, also certified in relaxation and sports massage, and completed courses in peak Pilates mat exercises. She also has three years experience working for a physiotherapy clinic as a rehab trainer, assisting clients through rehabilitation exercises.

Teneka’s personal exercise regime consists predominately of weight training, plus functional training using cables, Swiss balls, medicine balls, and a bosu, as well as cardio sessions on the treadmill, and vibration training three times a week. For her clients to reach their fitness goals, Teneka prefers traditional training methods such as weights and cardio. For her more active and experienced clients she adds in Pilates mat exercises, kettlebell training, and other exercises from an extensive list for functional training.

I was first introduced to Teneka at Vibra-Train’s Auckland City studio where she was using a Sports Model (Level 5) Vibration Machine as part of her program in the lead-up to Regional and National Figure Competitions early last year. When I asked what benefits she was seeing, Teneka told me vibration training was taking her body to a whole new level. She’d first experienced vibration training in 2007 when a friend took her along for a free trial. Thinking it would be easy she was shocked when that first session showed her weaknesses. She was unconvinced but interested enough to return for more sessions and over the next month she saw changes in her body shape.

Starting on a Level 2 platform as all newcomers do, Teneka trained using the Vibra-Train safety program with machine settings of 43Hz with 3mm amplitude. She said it is impossible to imagine the intense feeling in the muscles you get using a training machine until you try it, and she understands how confusing it must be for people who have only seen or tried low intensity copies. With her exercise experience and quickly learning to hold perfect position on the machines, Teneka moved through the levels, achieving the Sports Model (Level 5 intensity) in only six weeks.

Two weeks before the 2007 Bodybuilding Nationals, while following her body sculpting program, she desperately needed to look firmer fast [her emphasis] so after discussion with Lloyd Shaw, owner of Vibra-Train, she trained every second day on the Sports Model machine achieving the desired “firm athletic look” needed for competition. She competed for NABBA Nationals in "Physique" that year and placed second, and the NZFBB Nationals in "Body Fitness Short" and placed third. She then thought, “What, would happen if I did Vibra-Train for an entire year?”

Teneka told me, “Vibration training has firmed up my 'soft bits,' improving definition and strength in my butt and thighs. My legs have never ever looked so great! I’d never had legs this 'hot' just doing weights plus cardio on the treadmill; Vibra-Train was the only change, so I know it was due to this.” She added that she’d seen a noticeable difference in her physical appearance, muscular strength, and endurance compared with her previous gym program. In the Vibra-Train studio she sees other gym members who only ever do aerobic classes and many people who would never go to a gym. She said, “As a trainer I think it’s great to see them doing vibration training as it enhances their muscular development in ways similar to weight training and promotes health benefits associated with regular physical activity.”

I asked Teneka where she saw vibration training fitting into the fitness industry in the future; was it as a fad that would pass or was it a genuine training method? She answered, “Vibration training is another method of exercise. It plays an integral role in adding variety to a well-rounded training regime and when used on a regular basis it has long-term benefits which enhance other areas of physical performance and sport training. It is safe and easy to use, as there is an instructor on-site at all times to assist with the exercises." On newcomers to exercise who might want weight loss or improved fitness Teneka commented, “It’s good for everyone!” Lloyd Shaw then commented that even the most unfit individual would start to see results within three weeks of vibration training, just as Teneka had done if using a high quality machine and safety program, and guided by a trained instructor. Teneka praised the instructors, saying, “The instructors are awesome. They gave me new challenges which I love and the concept is simple — maintain perfect technique.”

Teneka has found vibration training to be the X-factor in her constant success in bodybuilding competitions over the past year.

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About Di Heap

  • Please click on the following links to see amazing pics of Teneka taken at the Body Building Champs.

    Teneka – side chest

    Teneka – abs

    And one of the Vibration Training machines she trained on

    Super Squat on Vibration Machine

  • mike hair

    Thanks Di, thats a great article.
    It is good when somebody that is involved in the fitness industry gives vibration training a decent go instead of having an opinion, especially someone with Teneka’s Credentials.

  • Nice article Di, well written, and well done to Teneka.

    There are some incredible benefits to WBV, and anyone who who still doubts this has their head in the sand.

  • Type her name into Google searching under images and see what you get. Hard body, hard attitude to training and well qualified. And willing to tests something new herself. Leaves SalM for dead in every department.

    Nice to see there are still decent trainers in the world leading the way, and she just happens to be a New Zealander.

  • Murray, Thanks for your comments.

    I didn’t elaborate on the types of vibration machines i.e Premium Speed Pivotal (Your training machines) and High Energy Lineal – the type Teneka trained on.

    I was in the studio doing my own training some of the times she was there. She worked-out so hardout on the machines – same positions as everyone else but on the highest force machine. I can only manage a couple of 60 second positions on that machine. The intensity of muscle contraction in my thighs is just too much for me. Big Congratulations to Teneka.

    I seriously challenge anyone to comment on here saying Vibration Training isn’t a real workout after reading this article. Sal M is a solid looking guy. I believe he’d find the Level 5 Sports Machine very difficult training.

  • Anomo

    Sorry I didn’t place pics in this article. You’re right, google Teneka’s name and there’s a photo album of amazing pics.

    Yes, she’s a New Zealander and had access to quality training machines. There are some good machines available in other countries too and I believe we will soon see more athletes listing vibration training as an integral part of their program. I know of cricketers, kickboxers, figure skaters and basketball players using vibration machines.

  • Mike Hair

    A competitive athlete and well qualified trainer, even in Kettle Bells which is Sal’s favorite, has trailed the large training machines from New Zealand. The same machines Di Heap, Lloyd Shaw, Wayne Campbell and myself have discussed in the past.

  • Philippa Church

    Thanks Di. I would support all you say here. I have a thriving studio in the UK and can also vouch for the results achieved though Vibration Training when good quality machines and the right programme is used. We always offer a free trial session as people are always sceptical about how it can achieve so much in such a short time. I love it when real tough guys come in and sneer as it kills them! We have had a Britain Strong man use this as part of his regular training. The first time he tried it he was unable to hold a good squat (super squat or wide stance) for 2 minutes and found it pushed him and challenged his muscles in a way that he could not replicate at the gym. By the end of a session the sweat was pouring from him! Many other athletes have also found it to be extremely valuable – from Black belt kick boxers to fottballers to marathon runners. The training not also increases their strength but also flexibility and so reduces risk of injury. This is of course not to mention our average clients – normal peope who just want to get a bit fitter, stronger and lose some inches for whom vibration training also yields great results.

  • [Edited] And I can’t provide proof anymore than if an Elite Athlete added any extra strength/toning training method (Kettlebells for example) to their regular program And then excelled at their competitions. It’s a no-brainer really, it would be obvious that the extra routine was the clincher. No one would question it. Other athletes would be quick to include the new method in their training.

    That’s the whole point of this article. To provide balance to the negative articles Sal has written by showing that Real Vibration Training on high quality machines gives Real results.

  • My comment was edited, maybe because I mentioned names but now it doesn’t make sense.

    I said I’d expected detractors, writing that Teneka’s praise of Vibration Training is simply anecdotal evidence.

    Note: An Elite Athlete plans their training very carefully and doesn’t waste their time or money on methods that don’t work.

  • Just to let readers know, we have a new dedicated Vibration Training Advice website. It has informative articles and one forum where people can ask questions (after they have read the articles that interest them)or to discuss issues. It is: