Q: How long have you had the bio-density machine?
I opened StrengthX in April of 2019 with the BioDensity Machine, Powerplate
Pro5, my chiropractic license, and my rehab/training area are separate from Osteogenic Loading.
Q: What results have your clients seen by using it?
BioDensity is an effective osteoporosis treatment. When Osteogenic Loading is done consistently and competently, I expect to halt the rate of bone wasting/loss or at least slow it down; everyone is unique and can respond differently. More importantly, it's clear that any deconditioned population engaging in safely executed biofeedback max isometric will get stronger in a foundational/structural way and, if given the opportunity to perform reps for lower intensity but longer duration (time under tension) is an optimal opportunity to rehab chronic biomechanical, respiration, and/or postural shortcomings that can plague activities of daily living. Isometrics, especially with observable output, are a valuable, low-demand method for shoring up weak points of leverage, motor control, and strategy for exertion.
Q: Are you 100% convinced that it works?
Being stronger works. Isometrics are fertile ground for rehab and strength training without the potential consequence of weights or ground impact. I am a firm believer that if we’re talking about Wolff’s Law (attempting to stimulate osteoblast activity and proliferation), we need to identify the high-intensity threshold of load-bearing activity; this can be accomplished via ground impact, isometrics, and/or with weights. Isometrics in the form of Osteogenic Loading has the lowest “cost of doing business” at this threshold. It’s not a matter of my opinion; the absence of weight and movement (or stress and skill) and impact allows for long-term sustainability and success. Osteogenic loading is a practical alternative to medications for osteoporosis with useful daily benefits.
Q: What kind of schedule do you have your clients using it once per week?
The recovery period for a max isometric is defined as 5-10 days per the Osteogenic Loading manual, which the research of this therapy is founded on. Once a week is the sweet spot. But I will also suggest that if this is the only way we achieve the high-intensity threshold stimulus, any amount of exposure greater than zero is probably helpful. Learning how to exert is one thing; learning how to exert competently at max perceived exertion is another.
Q: How long do you recommend they use it for one month, six months, or year…three years?
It’s not a matter of using BioDensity but rather subjecting their musculoskeletal system to high-intensity load-bearing activity without upsetting the apple cart in an orthopedic sense. We can do this through ground force impact greater than 4 G’s, isometrics above 70% perceived exertion, or with weights that are 70-85% of our one rep max in a given lift. Take your pick, and don’t forget-“use it or lose it” is a real thing, so doing nothing or only low intensity has its own long-term debilitating effects; I call it “The Pain of Weakness.” The question I like to ask is, “when was the last time you pushed something as HARD as you can for five straight seconds?”. Most folks are not coming close, so this becomes a valuable element in a person’s fitness and wellness portfolio for getting stronger and treating osteoporosis without medication.
Q: Why didn't you set it up as a membership thing like Osteo Strong?
I initially started as a membership style, however, the intermittent media hype pieces throughout 2020-2021 caused a repeated situation of clients feeling like they had to shelter down for extended periods, at which point refunds were requested. As a small business owner, I did not have the necessary apathy to deny such a request which ultimately made for some next to zero months of income. It was a hard lesson. Sessions are now paid for individually.
Q: Do you find it easy or hard to get clients to start using it?
Everyone is different. People who have made up their minds that they will seek any alternative to treating osteoporosis without drugs shined. People who were looking to “try” something wash out quickly. I don’t find this phenomenon unique to osteogenic loading but rather a product of modern-day human behavior. The better a client can understand WHY provides the better chance of sticking with it and reaping all the benefits. We’re learning how to be comfortable while uncomfortable; it’s simple but not easy.
Q: Ever had a client hurt themselves on the machine?
Yes. If a client is going to injure themselves doing Osteogenic Loading, it will almost certainly be in the “vert lift” portion (closed chain exercise position with feet on the ground vs being in the chair). Most notably was a gentleman looking to try anything physical for strength building after experiencing significant muscle wasting as a result of being on hormone blockers. The first session went well, and on the second, he tried a little harder and irritated a preexisting stress fracture in his spine.
I frequently use the phrase “cut the hair long” during sessions, which implies that we should ease into tension and max effort versus exploding/jumping into max effort thresholds. Just as one might tell their hairdresser before a big weekend to “cut the hair long” versus pulling out clippers and shaving head to skin, strains can occur, but we always try our best to breathe calmly and avoid bearing down or breathing coupled with any visible poor biomechanics and/or tension strategy/line of drive. Points of contact are constantly emphasized and prioritized during any physical endeavor, not just osteogenic loading.
Furthermore, if there is active pain during a rep, we need to back off the effort threshold and retool our efforts so that we can produce some tension (perhaps not maximal) without pain. If there is pain with isometrics its almost certain that pain will be present once weight, aka stress, or movement, aka skill, is required. It’s like asking someone who can’t do basic addition/substation to do college algebra; it simply ain’t happening. NEVER EXERCISE INTO PAIN.
Q: What's the best way you found to Market it to get people to use it?
Word of mouth and client education. The support from any physician with AMA credentials is almost non-existent as he/she is looking to dispense medications b/c that’s how they get paid, and it's obvious that finances drive the cart in today's world. Marketing has been my greatest challenge in life outside of living with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome.
Q: With the knowledge you have now, would you still buy the machine tomorrow if you didn't have one?
Absolutely. It fills a massive void. My first exposure to Osteogenic Loading instantly made me think of my stronger, younger self doing max day lifts in the gym that I do not do any longer. I haven’t skipped a week since opening in 2019. Outside my personal anecdotes, it's a low barrier to entry for high-intensity exertion and, consequently, loading. Use it or lose it. Bones want high-intensity thresholds for treating osteopenia or treating osteoporosis, isometrics offer the highest ceiling for max exertion.
Q: In purchasing, how would you rate doing business with the company?
Joe Koehler and Tony Lowenstein have been outstanding! They are very professional and easily available for contact. I can’t say anything negative regarding my experience w/ PHS and PowerPlate.
Q: Is it getting more popular, staying the same, or less popular using the bio-density machine?
People have found me via the BioDensity website. The more people that can appreciate the term Osteogenic Loading, the more the general population will appreciate its role as a unique form of isometric for creating bone-strengthening stimulus and effects. For me its about understanding and promoting a concept vs a brand name.
Q: I want to open it up in my city as there is a lot of 55 and over communities here, and I want to focus on marketing it to them. Any suggestions? I try my best with every opportunity a client gives me. Their ability to understand the WHY and to explore feeling something different is my priority. Self-awareness is probably the biggest thing I teach at StrengthX.
Q: Do you think I could make a sustainable business by doing that?
You would probably need to have multiple offices if it’s the only service/product. It’s a form of exercise therapy. It is not currently billable as a healthcare practitioner that I am aware of. For me its an adjunct to my overall health and wellness repertoire as well as a focal point/niche. Society has been conditioned to believe they don’t have to work hard or pay for health-related services. It’s as challenging a hustle as any other type of fitness of health venture outside of the mainstream/AMA.
Q: You had clients do a Dexa scan before and after and what have the results been?
That has not happened as frequently as I would prefer. It is not as easy as one would think to simply go and get a Dexa. Most folks will only receive one with a serious fracture or when they turn 65, with a follow-up every two years. Running a business and doing research are different. Even having my own equipment for bone density scanning, the Echolight REMs, it is not easy as people only have so much time and money. Not everyone who wants information wants to train, and not everyone training cares about diagnostic information. My expectation for people doing Osteogenic Loading consistently and competently is that the rate of loss will halt; building bone is a longer, more involved equation. Osteogenic Loading at least satisfies Wolff’s Law, which is a baseline essential in the bone conversation.
Q: You had to take a guess how many clients would you say you've put on the machine?
Over 300 different people so far.