Marietta Mehanni

PT Gymstick

Written by Marietta

November 26, 2013

Personal training with the Gymstick

The Gymstick can be used in one-on-one personal training sessions. The advantage a Gymstick offers is that the trainer is playing a more active role, as they are effectively controlling the level of resistance provided to the client. With each exercise, this can be increased or decreased according to the intensity required. The trainer receives kinaesthetic feedback, which assists in appreciating the level of challenge that the client is undergoing – more so than with free weights.


“Just wanted to let you know I really got a lot out of your Gymstick for PT course. I have already been using the gymstick with clients and they are all impressed with the workout intensity. It’s also amazing to see squat and lunge technique improve just by using the stick!” Fran

“Just thought I’d let you know that I think I have become a bit of a walking gymstick advertisement since doing the PT course on Sunday! I’ve been singing its praises to everyone, telling all the stats about pelvic floor, and even did my first full PT session tonight using it with my friend when I was working my shift at the gym. I later on had another play with it with one of the other students that was there from my course, and we were observed by a man in the gym who then came up and booked a session with me for tomorrow night 🙂
Good news travels fast!”
Cathy, NZ

Scott Clark
“Marietta’s gymstick session was again very interesting, fun and exciting. Marietta demonstrated full range of exercises that covered the whole body and most of all it made you burn those extra calories. The Gymstick is a very useful and portable tool that all PTs should own.”

Emma Walker
“Marietta packs an awful lot of personality into her tiny frame. A wealth of information, and extremely generous with her time
and expertise, Marietta’s sessions are always fun and fascinating. Marietta is not unlike a Gymstick herself – versatile, hard-
working, tough and a lot of fun!”

Matt Phillips
“Marietta is one of the most knowledgeable, organised and skilled presenters I have ever had the pleasure of working with. The energy and enthusiasm that Marietta brings to her teaching sessions is infectious making it impossible not to learn. The Gymstick is now my favourite piece of exercise equipment.”

An example of this is the chest combo series.

To set up the exercise, the client is holding the stick in front of their chest,

whilst the trainer stands behind the client holding the bands. 

It is important to begin with an appropriate level of tension in the bands.

To do this, the trainer can move backwards to increase the tension.

The client then extends the elbows while dropping down into a lunge (Primary exercise).


Another way of adding challenge to the exercise which will focus more on stability,

is to ask the client to begin in a lunge position with the stick at the chest and to

lift off into a hip extension while extending the elbows.

Both proprioception and balance will be challenged by this exercise.

(Progression 1)


A progression that will further challenge coordination and balance is to have the

client perform a one legged donkey kick as they complete a chest press (Progression 2).


The advantage of using the Gymstick, is that several joints and movements are in use simultaneously – and all whilst completing the humble chest press. The following exercise will highlight the ability of the Gymstick to combine exercises that normally would not be possible with weighted, gravity resisted movements.

The exercise is the tricep abdominal curl combo.

To begin this combo, the client is in a supine position with knees bent and feet flat to the floor. The client grips the bands, whilst the trainer is securing the stick to the floor. Appropriate tension is required before beginning the exercise, therefore communication between the client and trainer is paramount. To initiate this exercise, the client is required to bend the elbows to 90 degrees and position close to the body. Maintaining a neutral wrist, extend the elbows. (Primary exercise).


Adding the abdominal curl whilst performing the tricep extension highlights the effectiveness of the Gymstick, as effectively combines two exercises that with weighted resistance would not be possible.


To increase the abdominal intensity, lift the feet and execute an alternating knee and hip extension (Progression 2). This sequence adds an upper body workout to the traditional abdominal exercise.


The next series of exercises involves a dynamic component. Building from a simple one arm chest fly to a power lunge forward, it requires the body to be able to decelerate with control.

Initiate the first exercise by positioning the feet in a lunge position and hold both bands in one hand. The trainer stabilises the stick with both hands in an upright position. Care needs to be taken with the tension of the bands because if there is too much tension the client will not be able to control the eccentric phase of the contraction. The client horizontally adducts the arm to the front, ensuring that the elbow stays slightly flexed. Return back to the starting position (Primary exercise).

Progress this exercise by adding a lunge while simultaneously adducting the arm. As the body returns to the setup position, ensure that the hips remain stable (Progression 1).

The dynamic component is highlighted by the final step which begins with the arm abducted horizontally, balancing on one leg. Step forward into a dynamic lunge whilst adducting the arm. Controlling the recoil of the bands, bring the body back into the upright position. This movement requires a controlled deceleration in order to finish in a balanced position on one leg (Progression 2).

In Summary

Don’t just take our word for it, give it a go… try these exercises with your clients and see for yourself how training with the Gymstick truly is multi-dimensional. A traditional resistance exercise can be varied, developed and progressed in numerous ways, limited only by the span of your imagination. The active participation of the trainer in these exercises provides them with the necessary kinaesthetic feedback to be able to make minor adjustments to the tension of the bands, and therefore to the intensity of the exercise as it is being performed. A highly portable and hugely versatile tool, the Gymstick is a simple way of making resistance exercise for your clients more dynamic and much more interesting.

Gymstick PT workshop testimonial

Fran Furci
“Just wanted to let you know I really got a lot out of your Gymstick for PT course. I have already been using the Gymstick with clients and they are all impressed with the workout intensity. It’s also amazing to see squat and lunge technique improve just by using the stick…”

Anita Golob

“Hey Marietta, my new client whom is pregnant absolutely loves the Gymstick.
I have upgraded her to black and we have been doing the combined moves in
PT.  For such a simple tool, it works a charm.  Thanks heaps for the
workshops, i can’t wait for the swissball Gymstick workshop.”

Peter Tallentyre

“Just started including Gymstick workouts into my PT sessions, my clients are loving them. My clients are amazed at the intense workout they get by using the Gymsticks, I’m so glad I attended the last Gymstick workshop in Melbourne back in Dec, can’t wait for your next awesome course”

Les Rosenblatt
“Marietta is a wonderfully enthusiastic practitioner of the art of Gymstick, and engagingly generous in passing on her knowledge and experience.”

Jess Elliott
“Marietta is a fantastic instructor, how she can demonstrate, coordinate & still speak amazes me, wow what a workout! The gymstick is a fantastic unique tool that is a must-have for people looking for a unique, yet effective workout at home!”

Annette Dal Sasso
“Marietta is a killer presenter, one of a kind. Exceptionally motivating with an infectious personality.”

Dee Sheffrin
“Recently I took part in my first Gymstick course run by Marietta one week before going on holiday. It was the Gymstick for PT workshop held in Narrewarren and I purchased a Bootcamp Gymstick with a view to using it in my Personal Training sessions.
My alternative motive was to take the Gymstick away with me to maintain my fitness. You may be thinking what’s so special about that! Well our holiday was on board a sailing ship. A clipper to be precise. There were 159 passengers on board and 80 crew, no gym, two small plunge pools one of which enabled anyone at the bar to peer through the portholes into the pool…. The Aqua fitness class was viewed by all and sundry!
However, being a competitive masters swimmer I was not to be deterred and took my Gymstick up aft every morning with the sunrise. There were not many passengers about at that time and I did get some strange looks from crew members who were more used to seeing passengers relaxing on the sun loungers than flexing muscles on deck. I followed the routine on the poster given with the Gymstick and worked up quite a sweat as well as creating quite a bit of interest amongst the passengers; several of whom enquired as to how it worked and where to obtain one. I maintained some strength and flexibility during the cruise around the Mediterranean but couldn’t quite manage to keep the kilo’s from the wonderful food and cocktails at bay. The Gymstick folded up and fit in my husband’s suitcase, mine been too full of souvenirs and clothes. I was a bit worried about the commando type camouflage bag that it came in especially going through customs but as in the check in luggage no one queried what it was. Thanks Marietta for introducing me to this wonderful portable, do anywhere exercise stick. I hope that you have had several overseas enquiries since my holiday.”

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