How to Use: ViPR Tubes

It's the workout you didn't know you needed.


ViPR in action/Photo by Jamie Ducharme

Sure, you know how to use treadmills and hand weights. But what about all the other equipment in your gym? In this series, we’ll cut the intimidation factor and give you new tools for getting your best workout.

ViPR Tubes

We know what you’re thinking: What the heck is a ViPR tube?

If you’ve never seen one of these in your life, join the club. We were slightly dumbfounded too, so we got whipped into shape by Mark Safer, a Tier X trainer at Equinox. Here’s what we learned:

ViPR is an acronym for Vitality, Performance, and Re-conditioning. Vitality focuses on the principles of strength, energy, and movement. Performance is all about operating at the highest level possible. Re-conditioning is having the power to move quickly and effectively over and over again. At the heart of ViPR is the idea of whole-body integration, or using your entire body in every move you perform.

The tubes come in a range of weights, from four pounds all the way up to 57 pounds. Choose a weight that is challenging, but not impossible. There are two grip handles on one side of the tube, and one grip handle on the other. The tube can also be held by the ends.

Here are four ViPR moves anyone can do:

Squat Thread the Needle

Hold the ViPR with a two-handed grip. Rotate the ViPR so that it’s vertical, and squat down, keeping your arms straight in front of you. Touch the bottom of the tube to the ground, then return to standing and lift the tube above your head.

Rotate the tube 180 degrees, so that the hand that was on top is now on the bottom. Lower your arms, squat down, and touch that end to the floor. Return to standing.

Perform as many reps as possible in 30 seconds. Do four sets.

Lateral Shuffle with ViPR Tilt

Place one of the ViPR’s ends on the ground. Shuffle to the right while tilting the ViPR down with your right hand. Accelerate and lift the ViPR back up. Switch the tube to your left hand, shuffle to the left, and repeat.

Perform as many reps as possible in one minute. Do two sets.

Box Pattern

To work your shoulders, hold the ViPR in front of you with a two-handed grip, elbows at 90 degrees. Rotate the tube 90 degrees to the right, so that it’s vertical.

Rotate it another 90 degrees, so it’s now horizontal and above your head. Rotate it one last time, 90 degrees to the left, so that it’s vertical again.

Perform as many reps as possible in one minute. Do two sets.

ViPR Flipping

Stand with the ViPR tube placed vertically in front of you. Flip the tube over, gripping the end that’s closest to you.

Do a squat jump toward the end of the tube that’s now closest to you. When you get there, flip it again and repeat.

Perform as many reps as possible in one minute. Do three sets.

All videos filmed at Equinox Dartmouth Street.