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Aktiv Answers the Call for Strength Training Innovation With a Showstopper at IHRSA 24

Aktiv Answers the Call for Strength Training Innovation With a Showstopper at IHRSA 24

Aktiv’s SMITH 3D Trainer innovates on the shortcomings of traditional smith machines and barbell set-ups alike, making it a potent tool for fitness facilities of all sizes

Everywhere you look, strength training is all the rage and Aktiv Solutions didn’t disappoint at this year’s IHRSA 2024 Convention and Tradeshow. 

Aktiv Solutions, the commercial gym design and supply company specializing in movement-based training, debuted its highly anticipated GYM RAX SMITH 3D Trainer (S3D) at this year’s event. Aktiv has positioned the S3D as not simply a next-generation smith machine, but rather an onramp to what it claims is a swelling population of consumers looking for a better introduction to the fundamentals of strength training.

“There’s room to refine how consumers are leveling up with their now more rapid adoption of strength training modalities,” said Bryan Green, founder and CEO of Aktiv Solutions. “The advent of the SMITH 3D Trainer is both tremendous in terms of its timing and its ability to onboard a greater population of less-experienced enthusiasts, female lifters, and those who simply don’t wish to intertwine in the chaos of the weight-dropping or CrossFit-style culture.”

A Versatile & Well-Timed Launch 

Mindbody recently listed strength training as its top wellness trend for 2024. The workout modality is notably growing in popularity among those 55 years or older as well as across new demographics from Gen Z to active adults. 

“The S3D presents an opportunity for operators to appeal to their broader constituencies without alienating more advanced lifters,” Green said of how health clubs are expected to leverage the new system.

The S3D features a patent-pending movement carriage that synchronizes its safety catches to work like a built-in spotter during an entire exercise motion.

“No matter where you are in the range of the exercise, whether you’re in full extension, or you just can’t make that last rep, you’re able to re-rack safely at any point in that range of motion,” Green explained. “That’s the advancement, a smarter way to lift with peace and increase one’s confidence when pushing to their limits so they can get that last rep without fear that they’ll injure themselves without a spotter.”

Bryan Green (credit: Aktiv Solutions)

Ideal for a Variety of Facilities & Members 

These features also make the S3D an ideal addition to any fitness facility lacking supervision, like hotel or university gyms. That’s been a consistent goal for Aktiv in the release of the S3D given the increased popularity of those types of facilities.

With the explosion of non-health club fitness amenities from hotels to apartment buildings, it is imperative that these properties be able to more safely and effectively incorporate strength training. Equipment size, ease of use, and inclusiveness are critical in making a selection for these largely unsupervised spaces. The S3D solves for the great majority of these concerns.

“In the evolving landscape of fitness amenities, gyms have become a staple, along with pools and laundry rooms in modern buildings,” Andrew Gavigan, Director of Digital and Education at Aktiv Solutions, told Athletech News founder and CEO Edward Hertzman in an exclusive interview on the new product.

“Notably, the demand for strength training is on the rise, prompting us to pioneer innovative and effective products tailored to meet the evolving needs of users and facilities,” Gavigan added. “The S3D stands as a perfect testament to our commitment to providing cutting-edge solutions in this dynamic fitness environment.” 

credit: Aktiv Solutions

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While Aktiv’s new product is perfect for unsupervised fitness facilities, there are still advantages to using the S3D with a spotter or trainer present, especially when it comes to the personal or small group training high-touch environment.

“Personal trainers are there to guide as they watch a client’s form and movement, but often become a ‘spotter’ during barbell exercises,” Green noted. “This machine creates the freedom for trainers to take a step back, and focus on their expertise. It’s really an incredible tool for personal trainers to pick up efficiencies in the way that they’re working with the client.”

credit: Aktiv Solutions

Less Space, More Profit

The most expensive investment for any operator is often the real estate of the facility itself, so space consumption is critical when selecting the size of equipment, and more importantly, its footprint when in use. 

Leading health clubs often incorporate racks of their choice paired with the selection of a “lifting platform.” This combination can take up upwards of a 10’x12’ area for a single setup. Aktiv shares the S3D is unique in that its entire space requirement during use requires less than 7’x6’, or nearly half the space consumption of traditional rack-and-platform set-ups

This spurs efficiency and cost savings across the board for operators. 

Installations for Aktiv’s S3D have already begun and are rolling out across the United States with a select few early European locations on their way.

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