Last updated: 17/10/2022

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If you are reading these lines, it is probably because you have finished your training session and you are left with some painful sensations in some area of your arms, from the wrist to the elbow. If this is the case, it might be a good option to use a gyroscope to rehabilitate the injury.

These devices are little known but very effective in the treatment of muscular disorders in the upper limbs. If you didn’t know about them or need references to make a successful purchase, you will be able to make the right choice once you finish reading this article. Let’s get started!




Summary

  • A gyroscope, also called a gyroscope, is a sports training tool used to work and rehabilitate the upper extremities of the body. It is an easy-to-use supplement that requires only a few minutes a day to generate considerable benefits.
  • Because its origins lie in the astrological studies of the late 18th century, some models continue with traditional structures that require strings to start, making a similar effect to spinning tops. In contrast, the more modern ones have small, self-starting motors.
  • It’s the little details that make the difference in sports accessories. Keep in mind the possibility of investing in gyroscope add-ons, as well as considering the isometric weight they generate and the colour of the model of your choice.

The Best Gyroscope: Our Picks

Buying guide: what you need to know about gyroscopes

Some fitness accessories have such specific functions that they could be considered dispensable or simply unnecessary. However, there are essential factors that make the gyroscope an important aid in the treatment and prevention of injuries. Here we tell you everything you need to know.

Gyroscopes are aids in the treatment of lateral epicondylitis, also known as tennis elbow. (Photo: Vasyl Dolmatov / 123rf)

What is a gyroscope and what are its advantages?

The gyroscope is a tool developed from the laws of mechanics which, in the sports market, focuses on the ability to generate isometric energy through rotation. It consists of a sphere that, with inertia and the force of gravity, rotates on its own axis and activates different muscles of the upper limb.

Thanks to the way it works, it is a highly useful instrument that takes up very little space. The centrifugal force allows different arm muscles to be exercised in a matter of minutes, generating the effect of carrying between 10 and 18 kg of isometric weight. It is used to rehabilitate injuries because it stimulates without affecting the joints.

Among the main disadvantages is the price, which can be high if the gyroscope is to be used sporadically. In addition, excessive use could have counterproductive effects, so we recommend handling it under expert supervision, especially if it is used therapeutically.

Advantages
  • Strengthens and recovers upper limbs
  • Ergonomic design
  • Works on mechanical principles
  • Joint friendly
  • Requires only a few minutes of use
Disadvantages
  • Can be an expensive purchase
  • Some models require additional accessories
  • Therapeutic use requires medical supervision
  • Excessive use may cause injury

Gyroscopes with a lanyard or auto-start – what to look out for?

One of the fundamental aspects of gyroscopes lies in the way we start them. Some are based on the classic structure of experimental gyroscopes, while others integrate technology that adds value to the product. Both fulfil the essential function, but there are details you’ll want to be aware of.

Lanyard. These are the traditional models that incorporate the principle of mechanics similar to yo-yos: a string is inserted into the centre of the dial, given a couple of turns and pulled to activate. Although these models have gradually fallen into disuse, this also makes them more economical.

Automatic start. In contrast, automatic starters are equipped with technology that allows the centrifugal force to be regulated both by hand movement and by programming. Most require a few turns of the thumb to start spinning. The most practical and user-friendly design.

Cord Automatic start
Design Traditional Avant-garde
Start mode Pull cord Friction, small internal motor
Price Low (approx. 400 MXN) Medium (+500 MXN)

When to use a gyroscope?

In therapeutic cases, the gyroscope provides relief from upper extremity injuries. Some of the most common include fractured humerus, scaphoid or radial head, wrist pain, finger numbness, elbow numbness or olecranial bursitis. If you suffer from any of these injuries, this product is for you.

Similarly, some sporting activity disciplines may require add-ons like this. In general, a gyroscope can help you strengthen your arms and wrists to improve your performance if you play golf, tennis, climbing, cycling or martial arts. It is also useful for pianists, drummers and guitarists.

Buying criteria: factors that allow you to compare and rate gyroscope models

As you can see, gyroscopes can be quite useful additions to improve the performance of wrists, hands and arms. The technology based on 19th century astrological and physical principles makes it a battery-free gadget. To make your experience more enriching, consider these additional details.

  • Add-ons
  • Isometric weight
  • Colour

Add-ons

It’s the little things that make the difference. Some of the add-ons mentioned below are not included with all gyro models, so you will need to evaluate whether they are critical to you or whether you can do without them.

Strap. While the material of most gyroscopes is designed to withstand drops, a safety strap can help you avoid losing control of your gyro in a sudden movement. Likewise, this item could be very useful for transport and storage.

Speedometer. As mentioned, the most equipped models include their own speedometer, which can be adjusted by electronic commands. Others do not, but become compatible with external gadgets. In any case, this system allows you to have a precise control of the power of the exercise performed.

LED lights: Who said that using gyroscopes can’t be a fun experience? There are models that include LED lights of different colours that are activated by the movement itself. If you are a fan of exercise sessions enlivened by neon lights, this variable is for you.

Isometric weight

Isometric exercise is known as exercise that subjects the muscles to constant tension but without movement. In this case, isometric weight refers to the quality of subjecting the arm to a tension equivalent to a certain amount of net weight, but without actually lifting it.

This effect is achieved by the maximum speed that the gyroscope can reach: the more revolutions per minute (RPM) it reaches, the more force (kg) it will produce in the arm. On average, these devices reach between 1,000 and 2,500 RPM, which translates into a force of between 11 and 23 kg.

Knowing how hard your gyroscope is working will help you keep an accurate monitoring of the stimulus your body is receiving. Don’t forget that this accessory must be used under the supervision of a specialist when performing rehabilitation functions. Likewise, the isometric weight does not replace the net weight of the dumbbells.

Colour

A minor detail that should nevertheless be taken into consideration. Colour is a way of expressing ourselves and identifying ourselves with the outside world. For this reason, the sports market has diversified the offer of products according to chromatic qualities. Of course, gyroscopes are no stranger to this trend.

We have already discussed the added value of LED lights. Similarly, the housings that make up gyroscopes come in different colours for different personalities: black, white, grey and amber are some of the most popular offers on the market. Choose the one that motivates you the most to train!

(Featured image photo: inspiredbythelight / 123rf)

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