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MailTribune.com
  • Techno Training

    Ashland fitness club owner invents machines to make workouts more precise
  • Champion rower and fitness center owner Andy Baxter of Ashland is taking his work in a whole new direction — inventing smart workout machines that loop into computers, allowing users to target specific muscles without forcing the whole body to join in.
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  • Champion rower and fitness center owner Andy Baxter of Ashland is taking his work in a whole new direction — inventing smart workout machines that loop into computers, allowing users to target specific muscles without forcing the whole body to join in.
    His new Function C3, made by SciFit in Oklahoma, sells for $9,000 and already has been purchased by the St. Louis Cardinals, six universities and Aaron Anders Physical Therapy in Medford, where 15-year-old Alaina Thomson uses it to guide a dot down a "roadway" on the computer screen, using her injured hip and knee to do it.
    "I can isolate my hip a lot better than on other equipment," says Thomson, a Central Point resident. "It's a great tool for athletes to target areas of their body."
    The machine, one of seven Baxter has designed, is a "multi-planar resistance" device, meaning you can do standing pull-downs and — something almost impossible on any other machine or free weights — pull your hips backward, stretching elastic bands both on contraction and extension, with the screen showing you how much energy you're putting into it and for how long.
    "It allows me to isolate certain muscle groups and actively work them," says Anders, a physical therapist. "I can set parameters of how quick you do it and how long you hold it and how fast you take it off. You can work the eccentric component (opposite of contraction) and go at your own speed. It's amazing what Andy's done."
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