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Marodyne vs VT007

Is VT007 an alternative to Marodyne?

I have been asked if my VT007 is a low intensity vibration plate, or if VT007 can provide 0.4 G-force. For the reference, I was usually directed to Dr. Clinton Rubin's YouTube videos.

Dr. Rubin represents a vibration plate model named Marodyne LiV. He promotes Marodyne vibration plate for treating osteoporosis.

Many people are wondering if VT007 linear vibration plate is a low price alternative to Marodyne LiV.

Well, the two machine models are very different.

Marodyne LiV

Marodyne Vibration Plate

Marodyne's website does not provide much information about their vibration plate, particularly the frequency and amplitude, which are essential to describe vibration. I found no written product information about Marodyne's tech specifications from my extended internet research.

Marodyne has been around for over 10 years. The seller is very active in social media marketing. The brand has built up a considerable internet presence. It just seems like that few people ever care about the product itself.

Nevertheless, I was able to dig out the frequency and the amplitude information from Dr. Rubin's videos. Dr. Rubin mentioned Marodyne LiV has a displacement of 125 micron. He recommended 30Hz vibration frequency. The displacement should mean the peak-to-peak amplitude of his vibration plate.

With this information I am able to do some technical comparisons between Marodyne LiV and VT007.

More over, after watching a few of Dr. Rubin's YouTube videos, I would like to share my opinion on his theory about low intensity vibration promoting bone growth. I see his approach as pseudo-science.

in this article
  • Marodyne vs VT007 - intensity comparison
  • G-force of Marodyne LiV
  • The "trick" of Dr. Rubin's theory
  • Skeletal muscle contraction is essential for bone growth.
  • Scientific studies on vibration therapy
  • Does Marodyne actually work?

Marodyne vs VT007 - intensity comparison

For VT007, I provide transparent product information in detail on my website, including not only the motion pattern, frequency, amplitude, and G‑force, but also the structure, mechanical device and materials.

As a short summary, VT007 is a linear vibration plate model that employs an eccentric‑wheel device to generate vibration. It is designed with two‑amplitude settings. VT007 has an amplitude range from 0.7mm to 3mm, and an adjustable frequency range from 15Hz to 40Hz.

For Marodyne, let's assume it has a fixed amplitude of 125 micron, and a fixed frequency of 30Hz, according to Dr. Rubin.

125 micron (0.125mm) is just a little more than the thickness of a regular printing paper which is about 100 micron.

Marodyne moves up and down about a paper‑thin distance. It vibrates like "buzz", as Dr. Rubin described.

Compared with VT007, Marodyne is an extremely low intensity vibration plate.

Marodyne LiV VT007
Photos
not in proportion to their sizes
VT007 Vibration Plate
Frequency 30Hz 15 - 40Hz
Amplitude 125micro = 0.125mm Low: 0.7-1.2mm
High: 1.5-3mm
G-Force 1.11 calculated by Jay
0.4 claimed by Dr. Rubin
No load: 1.2 - 3.8
180Lb load: 1.1 - 2.7
Movement device Not disclosed Eccentric wheel + spring
Motor Rated Power 70W DC Motor 80W
Max Load Not disclosed 308 Lb
Machine Weight 18Lb 24 Lb
Dimensions 17"x14"x3" 22"x16"x5.7"

Marodyne's paper-thin amplitude is almost negligible. Such a tiny displacement does not actually induce effective skeletal muscle contraction.

Relatively, VT007 has much higher vibration intensity. I would not considered VT007 as an alternative to Marodyne LiV.

(VT007 is a low price alternative to Power Plate though.)

G-force of Marodyne vibration plate

Dr. Rubin gets it wrong about the G-force of his Marodyne LiV vibration plate.

What is G-force
gravity G

On the earth, we are subject to earth gravity. The intensity of gravity is expressed by the acceleration of gravity, which equals to 9.8 m/s2 at the sea level.

It is easier to perceive and comprehend the magnitude of acceleration using the earth gravity acceleration G as a unit, which is called G-force. When you stay put on earth ground, you are subject to a G-force of 1G.

In comparison, astronauts may experience 3G acceleration during rocket launch.

When you are on a vibration plate, the accelerated vertical movement of vibration adds additional G-force to your body, on top of the gravity acceleration (1G) you already have. Therefore the G-force that your body have on a vibration plate is above 1G.

Given 125 micron amplitude and 30Hz frequency which Dr. Rubin mentioned for his Marodyne vibration plate, I calculate that the user would get a G-force of 1.11G on Marodyne.

In other words, Marodyne vibration plate adds an additional 0.11G on top of the earth gravity.

Dr. Robin claimed the G-force of Marodyne to be 0.4G, which does not agree with the amplitude and frequency he stated, and obviously he did not consider the earth gravity.

In comparison, VT007's G-force ranges from 1.1G to 2.7G for a 180Lb load, varying according to the frequency and the amplitude setting.

 

How our body perceives vibration G-force

While the G-force of a rocket is sustained during the launch period, the G-force of a vibration plate has a different scenario. As vibration plate moves up and down, the G-force alters between the max positive value and the max negative value in every movement circle that lasts only a tiny fraction of a second. The G-force defined for vibration is the average value of a phase when the vibration plate accelerates upwards.

Because the G-force of vibration plate is in continuous short pulses, our body does not perceive the real magnitude of vibration G-force.

Let's use an example to understand this perception.

If your body weight is 180Lb, when you are accelerated upward with 2.7G, let's say you are on a launching rocket, you will endure a pull-down force of 488Lb (2.7x180Lb) for a few minutes. Your feel as if your body weight is 488Lb.

On a vibration plate with 2.7G and 30Hz frequency, you will also endure 488Lb pull-down force, but only in the 1/4 cycle that the vibration plate accelerates upwards. One cycle lasts 1/30 second. Therefore you endure 488Lb for only 0.008 second (1/120) in every cycle. This is so short a time period that you don't even perceive you have ever experienced 488Lb, but the mechanical stimulation on your muscles and bones is a real 488Lb. That's the physics.

This explains that vibration acceleration can put higher magnitude mechanical stimulation on your body without you perceiving the actual magnitude.

Vibration provides high magnitude mechanical stimulation without stressing your muscles and bones.

The "trick" of Dr. Rubin's theory

In his YouTube videos, Dr. Rubin started with medical science about how physical exercise insufficiency and aging can cause bone loss, and how stem cell differentiation can work for bone growth.

bone tissue

Dr. Rubin said that mechanical stimulation could signal stem cell differentiation for bone cells. He also touched on the rapidly repeated muscle contraction induced by vibration.

These points are legitimate. They have been well approved by mainstream science society as I have learned from my own research.

However, Dr. Rubin then jumped to state that his paper-thin amplitude Marodyne provides the needed signal for bone growth. He talked about that the vibration signal can "trick" the stem cells to develop into bone cells. This jump of reasoning without scientific support makes his theory pseudo.

Dr. Rubin said when a user stands straight on a Marodyne LiV vibration plate. The vibration can transmit all the way up to the head. That way the signal would "trick", as Dr. Rubin spelled, the bones to grow.

Regardless whether such a "trick" or "buzz" works or not, the vibration from Marodyne would be absorbed by the interstitial fluid before getting to the muscle cells, let alone reaching to the stem cells deep in the bone marrow. Marodyne's vibration is too weak due to its paper‑thin amplitude.

Dr. Rubin quoted a couple of individual cases and seemingly a research trial of using his machine, but he did not provide any documented data and evidence to support that using his machine would help bone growth.

By mixing well-accepted medical science in his talk, Dr. Rubin tried to make his reasoning plausible. However, he jumped to his conclusion with a mystery: vibration signal would "trick" the bone to grow. This "trick" concept just sounds tricky.

What is missing from Dr. Robin's theory, in my view, would be the skeletal muscle contraction and the physiological processes behind this response. However, Marodyne vibration plate, with its paper-thin movement, does not induce skeletal muscle contraction.

In my hypotheses, mechanical stimulation from skeletal muscle contraction is essential for promoting bone growth. This is how vibration therapy works.

Skeletal muscle contraction provides the mechanical stimulation for bone growth.

Muscle contraction is essential for bone growth

Scientists have long recognized that mechanical interactions between skeletal muscles and bones are inherent to bone integrity.

muscle contraction

Muscle contraction, through pulling on the connecting bones, can stimulate bone growth. Its physiological processes promote hormone production and influence stem cell differentiation.

Scientists have observed that strength training is more effective for bone growth than other forms of physical exercise. The logic behind is that muscle contraction needs to achieve a certain magnitude to effectively promote bone growth.

Due to skeletal muscle's natural stretch reflex response, vibration can be used to induce rapidly repeated skeletal muscle contraction. Such a unique form of muscle contraction may have its special effectiveness and efficiency. Due to the short-pulse pattern vibration acceleration (G-force), vibration plate can provide higher magnitude mechanical stimulation without stressing our musculoskeletal system.

Marodyne vibration plate, with its paper-thin amplitude, can hardly induce any muscle contraction. Without muscle contraction, what is the mechanical stimulation for the bone growth?

Although many VT007 users reported bone density improvement through using VT007, there has not been any research trial conducted to prove the efficacy. VT007 can surely induce intensive rapidly repeated muscle contraction, beneficial for bone growth. The muscle contraction produces a real pulling force on bones, not a "trick".

(If you are a scientist that is interested in conducting a genuine research trial using VT007, I will be happy to sponsor my time and the equipment.)

Knee bending on vibration plate

Dr. Rubin said that, on his vibration plate, the user should keep the knee locked straight. This way the vibration signal can transmit all the way up to "buzz" the bone to grow. He claimed his Marodyne does not hurt the user's knee joints with the standing straight pose.

It probably is true that his extremely low intensity Marodyne vibration plate does not hurt the knee joint. In fact, with its paper-thin amplitude, Marodyne does not really affect the user much, positively or negatively whatsoever.

Dr. Rubin criticized that the other manufacturers, like Power Plate, have to advise their customers to bend their knees in order to avoid knee injury. He considers the knee bending pose as a drawback because such a pose prevents vibration from transmitting to the upper body (to do the "trick").

On a vibration plate, knee joints are more subject to the pull-down force created by vibration G-force. It is unclear if the repeated short pulses of high magnitude impact from vibration can harm the cartilage.

L-squat

Anyway, you should keep your knees bent so that your muscles can exercise and resist the pull­down force created by vibration G-force, reducing the mechanical impact on cartilage. Knee bending is our natural pose for flexing muscles and protecting the joint when we walk, run or jump. Don't act against our natural pose.

In fact, we want to actively bend our knees to exercise our leg muscles.

On a linear vibration plate, squat is the best exercise to effectively allow vibration to induce muscle contraction around the knees and hips. With such a pose, the impact on knee joint from vibration is less than the impact from regular walking.

So, knee bending pose on a vibration plate is not just for knee protection, but also essential for inducing the beneficial rapidly repeated muscle contraction.

If you keep your knee straight on a vibration plate, there is not much active muscle contraction. The mechanical stimulation on bones can only be a "trick".

Scientific studies on vibration therapy

Scientific studies on vibration therapy are very limited.

Most research projects are literature reviews. There are some research trials scattered to a wide variety of subjects, mostly conducted in universities with very limited resource. Check www.pubmed.gov for citations and papers of research trials on various vibration therapy applications. All these research trials are conducted with small sample size, not adequately designed and implemented, often unfinished. None of the studies has lead to a reliable conclusion for any applicable modality and efficacy.

There are too many variables to test for a certain modality. A research trial may fail to produce a positive result just because of a wrongly selected parameter, such as movement pattern, exercise pose, frequency, amplitude and time (dosage). It would be very time consuming and would require many repetitive trial processes to test multiple variables and their combinations. However, there is no commercial incentive for any scientist to conduct such a costly research trial.

FDA registration is voluntary for vibration plates and manufacturing facilities. For their intended uses, most vibration plate models in the market could be registered with FDA as Class I devices. An FDA Class I registered device indicates that the devise poses minimal potential risk for harm to the users. It does not certify any treatment effectiveness from using this device. Power Plate is probably the only vibration plate manufacturer that did the Class I registration for some of their models. VT007 is not registered with FDA, so is Marodyne.

science research on vibration therapy

However, lack of scientific proof does not prevent me from pursuing my effort to advocate vibration therapy. Vibration does impact our body in a unique way. I believe such an impact can be certainly used as a therapeutic intervention.

I am a genuine researcher on vibration therapy. I believe the rapidly-repeated skeletal muscle contraction induced by vibration is the cure for many medical conditions. Vibration therapy is a natural and non-invasive alternative medicine. It is about promoting our fundamental self-healing ability.

(If you are a scientist and interested in conducting a genuine research trial using VT007, I will be happy to sponsor my time and the equipment.)

Does Marodyne actually work?

I don't think Marodyne would have any significant impact on human body due to its paper-thin amplitude.

Bone density can be measured using x-ray imaging technology called DEXA Scan (dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry scan). This technology allows scientists to conduct quantitative studies for bone loss treatment and achieve more accurate results. As a scientist and working in a university, Dr. Rubin should have some properly designed clinical study done and provides quantitative results in terms of modality and efficacy.

As for VT007, I don't know how effective it could be to help bone growth. However, I know that, with its designed frequency, amplitude and motion pattern, VT007 can certainly induce intensive, rapidly repeated skeletal muscle contraction, which will promote bone growth with a certain effectiveness.

I would recommend performing shallow squat, L-squat and deadlift on VT007 vibration plate. I believe these poses can effectively enhance muscles around the knees, hips and the lower back, with minimized stress and impact on the knee joints. Muscle contraction activates muscles and the connecting tissues. The pulling contraction force signals hormone production and stem cell differentiation, promoting bone growth. Enhanced muscles also provide better support to bones.

Thanks for viewing. Please leave your comments below for discussions.

 

Dr. Rubin's Interview About Low Intensity Vibration Therapy

References

Osteoporosis or Low Bone Mass at the Femur Neck or Lumbar Spine in Older Adults
Anne C. Looker, PhD | April 2012 | CDC
Effect of 6-month whole body vibration training on hip density, muscle strength, and postural control in postmenopausal women: a randomized controlled pilot study
By Sabine M P Verschueren, Machteld Roelants, Christophe Delecluse, Stephan Swinnen, Dirk Vanderschueren, Steven Boonen PubMed.gov | PMID 15040822

 

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