WBV causing a stinger?

Question from a PT for a professional soccer team in Europe

I have also had several instances of burners or stingers sustained during competition shortly after athletes participated in WBV stretches. Any thoughts?

If the suggestion is that stretching on WBV caused stingers, it is possible.

1) If they are using vertical vibration, it is very reasonable that there was some level of CNS depressions that denigrated motor control prior to the event. Exposure to head acceleration can dampen motor control or any aspect of performance. If they used rotational vibration or low intensity on vertical, this scenario is not as likely.

2) Stretching with WBV can mean a few things. If you are in a typical lengthened position on the platform, you are putting the muscle on stretch, but you are actually facilitating that muscle to contract. I wouldn’t think that would lead to a stinger, but if you are doing something that you don’t think you’re doing, it may cloud the training session’s goals.
In order to achieve potential length or decrease tone prior to a static or dynamic “stretch,” the muscle in question should be on slack when loaded to the platform. This is counter-intuitive, yes, but that is how you inhibit muscle tone using WBV.

3) Assuming stingers/burners is referring to the upper extremity, using the platform for excitation in a plank or push-up in a poor pattern will only further cement the bad pattern. WBV can be powerful in a corrective format in terms of reloading the pattern, but it can be just as powerful in reloading poor form. It may feel or even retest better initially from increased blood flow, but this is not an authentic response.

4) In all honesty, this is probably coincidence, but it is all the more reason to not trust vertical vibration platforms if that is what they’re using. In Europe, rotational platforms are far more prevalent as they are in America, so this may be a moot point.

Vibraflex 450. Get one from Woodway. ­čÖé

  • October 12, 2010

Leave a Reply 4 comments

Rick Mecklenberg Reply


On the topic of WBV with rotational platforms, I was wondering where on the buying hierarchy you’d rank these for a strength and conditioning facility that doesn’t have, for all intents and purposes, an unlimited budget at its disposal. Obviously there are a number of foundational elements that would rank far above this on a practical level, but I’d be curious for who/where/when you think this item should start to enter into the discussion when funds start to become a bit more readily available and some additional items can possibly be added.

Charlie Reply

Rick – WBV can do things that no other equipment, method, or modality can do. This I am very linear on.
However, when budget is in the picture, I can not support the purchase. I hope this says something about my integrity as indeed I represent Vibraflex and Woodway.
This is a product that is an elite luxury car. It is a car that is “better” than a cheaper car. But the “cheaper” car can still work very well.

If you are angling towards a marketing approach, I think many folks would agree that this investment can and will bring folks into the door.

Sergio Reply

I still not understand the difference between vertical or rotational vibration. Does it refer to the direction in which the platform is moving? I am building my own platform: a metal plate with legs with a motor under. Would this provide rotational or vertical vibration?

Charlie Reply

It describes the direction of motion of the plate.

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