Today I thought I would mix things up and do a product review. Most kettlebell trainers are into using a variety of training implements, and blast straps are one that many consider so today I am reviewing my pair of Blast Straps. Keep in mind I do not sell them or receive anything from EliteFTS if you purchase them.
I asked for a set of blast straps for Christmas back in 2005 after reading about them on Elitefts.com and wanted a pair right away. I get excited about new training toys but am sometimes disappointed, luckily this was not the case.
Why would you want to use blast straps in the first place? First off, look at the male gymnasts competing in the rings at this year's Olympics. Their arms, shoulders, chest and backs are jacked. The fact is, placing your muscles under tension, and forcing them to stabilize your body from moving in multiple planes will make you strong! When you do a simple push-up with the blast straps, you are in for a treat. Your arms will try to move in all different directions, your core will want to sag, and just holding still will get you sweating. The freedom of movement that you have to prevent makes all your muscles tense up much like a maximum effort lift!
Because of this, doing push-ups with the blast strap really forces your body to work very hard and adapt to the new stimulus. The exercise you can do with blast straps are pretty endless, to name a few you can do push-ups, rows, dips, chins-ups, face pulls, triceps extensions, flys, reverse flys, planks and arms out planks. In each exercise your core is bracing hard to keep you stable and your upper body is tensing to keep your hands in the proper plane. The fact is, blast straps take exercises you have adapted to and make them totally new to your body. This required adaptation to blast straps will make you stronger and build hypertrophy. I love using blast straps on hypertrophy day, really focusing on time and tension and quality movement. When using them I always get a crazy pump, which is a foreign experience to a former powerlifter like myself!
If you are worried about quality, make sure you buy the EliteFTS blast straps. I haven't tried the knock-offs but I have owned my EliteFTS straps for almost three years and they are still in perfect shape. The handles are very high quality, the straps and rugged and adjustable, plus they just look hardcore. Could you use gymnastics rings instead? I don't see why not, but the handles on the blast straps have a weight lifting look and feel that lifters like me appreciate.
Along with the blast straps I purchased a foam roller, which I will discuss in a future post. To my surprise EliteFTS threw in a cool lanyard (key chain rope with their logo along it) and a hand written "Thank You" from Jim Wendler himself! I was really impressed with the customer service, so I recommend dealing with them online.
Below is a video of some Blast Strap exercises you can do, but the possibilities only end with your imagination!