In a league of their own: IHRSA’s uncategorizable products

Some of the cool new products at IHRSA didn’t quite fit into any of the major categories, but deserve a mention nonetheless. Check out what caught our reporter’s eye as she perused the trade show floor.
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IHRSA was packed with amazing stuff, both old and new. SNEWS spotted a few items that deserve a mention even though they defied categorization.

Among them was a new heart-rate monitor from Polar, a contraption called CoreStix (MSRP $1,300 to $1,800), a mixed-martial arts trainer with an interactive console and a product somewhere between a recumbent bike and a stepper.

SNEWS was taken with Inspire’s Cardio Strider-2 (MSRP $1,795) and perhaps could have included it in our cardio spotlight. The Cardio Strider looks like a recumbent bike, but instead of going in a circular motion its pedals operate in a simple back-and-forth reciprocating leg movement. The unit has moving arms, giving users an opportunity for an upper body workout.

“This [piece] has zero impact and works upper and lower body together,” said Jeff Laboard of Inspire.

The handles on the console include a built-in heart-rate monitor and the computer console offers six total-body programs and two upper-body interval programs.

Garmin, Scosche and Polar all made appearances at IHRSA this year, but only Polar offered a brand new item. Its RCX5 outdoor heart-rate monitor was designed for triathletes, runners, cyclists and other endurance athletes who seek to optimize training. 

The RCX5's ZoneOptimizer feature adjusts users' heart rate zones to make each workout as effective as possible. Users can switch between sports while the unit continues to provide heart-rate readiness — even in water, with a hybrid transmitter

We brought you the news on the Nexersys iPower Trainer (List $7,500), manufactured and distributed in North America by Tag Fitness, in our IHRSA preview before the show opened. Now that SNEWS has seen it, we think it might be a fun item to stock in specialty stores, especially since Tyler Pederson of HealthStyles in Denver, Colo., told SNEWS that more and more customers are coming in asking for MMA-training machines and products.

The current model is USB-enabled to allow users to capture their workout data, and but the company has plans to make it WiFi-enabled, so users can spar with others from around the world.

Another product we noted our preview story was CoreStix, created after inventor Mike Kadar he spent an inspiring day digging fence poles. He realized his chore was hitting his core, and giving him a pretty great ab workout. So he invented the product with a board and three mounts on the front that have several holes in it for the fiberglass “Stix," or rods, to be inserted and used in various ways for a full-body functional workout. Currently the company only offers a commercial unit, and Kadar said he'd like to develop CoreStix classes.

It seemed like plenty of people were interested in the unit, with a steady flow of people going through the booth throughout the days of IHRSA, testing it out.

--Ana Trujillo

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