Pros: Small, easy to use, double crunch machine.
Cons: No back or neck support, working of resistance levels are somewhat of a mystery.
When I walked into my cousin’s house in Florida I was overwhelmed by the amount of gizmos she had. Body by Jake makes a machine called Ab Scissor. It is a combination of the Ab Lounge and the Yukon Ab Crunch. Based on your e-mails I know people are desperate to find the right abdominal machine.
Ab Scissor will run you $265 versus Yukon’s for just over $200. The least expensive Ab Lounge will cost you under $100. Ab Scissor is designed as an upright machine like the Yukon rather than one that has you lying down like the Ab Lounge. I have used all types of machines. The lying down position is just as effective as the sitting up position. Your choice of machines, props or tools will depend on what you feel you will be comfortable on. Hopefully this review will help.
About Ab Scissor:
I will be shortening the words abdominal muscles to abs. The Ab Scissor is similar to the Ab Lounge because you are doing what the Ab Lounge calls a jackknife movement, I call a double crunch and Jake calls Scissor Action. The Yukon Ab Crunch has you crunching with only the top half of your body. For clarification a crunch is a type of exercise that can be done in many different ways and is a terrific way to tighten your abs. It involved short movements. Cardio vascular work, however, is the best way to get the fat off your abdominal muscles. You cannot spot reduce any one area.
The Ab Scissor is very easy to use. There are no attachments. There are no plates to add for weight.
The Ab Scissor is one of the more effective machines I have used. When I walked in and I saw many As Seen on TV products I cringed as I usually do. I must get over that because more often than not these products surprise me. Jake surprised me with this one! It is not for everyone, though.
It is designed to tone and tighten the upper abs and to firm and flatten your lower abs. Since there is the ability to turn your body from side to side you can work your oblique muscles as well. (The muscles on your sides)
The machine weighs 43 pounds versus the 85 pound Yukon. It folds in what I consider an easy way to a 26 ? inch machine. It has rollers so it can be moved if you want to store it. (Storing exercise equipment is not recommended by me unless you have to have the room because you won’ use it if it is in storage.) The Ab Scissor is small. It is 49 inches long, 22 3/4 inches wide and 54 1/2 inches high.
The weight limit for the machine is 275 pounds. The weight capacity of the Yukon is 200 pounds. Although I did not measure the seat it seems even smaller than the seat of the Yukon Ab Crunch Machine which I called small. In my opinion someone who weighs that much and is overweight rather than tall may not be comfortable sitting on the Ab Scissor.
The seat is padded and soft so I had no problem with the comfort of the seat.
Ab Scissor has no back. I find that machines that have backs and/or support my neck are more comfortable than ones that have no back. If you use the Ab Scissor perfectly you may not feel any strain in your neck. However since this is one of the most common questions I get I will go out on a limb and say that I do not think this is the best machine for you if you have had a neck injury or if your neck bothers you when you do crunches.
There is a 30 day guarantee. You can try it and then return it if you are not satisfied. You will have to pay for the shipping costs however.
Let’s use the Ab Scissor:
I am going to sit down on the seat. It is easy to get on and off. The machine feels stable and sits on two bars so there is no worry that I will tip over. I raise my arms to grab the curved handles. These are quite comfortable to hold. You may wonder if I can reach them easily. Another one of the most commonly asked questions to me has to do with height. I get questions from very short people and very tall people. The Ab Scissor, we are told, will work whether you are 4'11" or 6'6" tall. I am 5 feet 4 inches tall and am quite comfortable on the Ab Scissor. My cousin is the same height but her boyfriend is over 6 feet tall. I asked him to show me what it was like for him to use the machine. He had no problem with it. The handles curve over so you can hold them at different levels depending on your height. However you will not be able to go too far back or you will hurt your shoulders.
Once on the machine I move forward. As I do so my legs go up in what I previously described as a jackknife, Scissor Action or what I call a double crunch. In spite of Ab Scissor helping with form it still has to be used correctly. If I pull on the handles of the Ab Scissor letting my arms do the work pulling me down, I will not feel the benefits of this machine, or any machine. I have to use my arms just to guide the handles down using my ab muscles to actually bring me down keeping those muscles tight the entire movement.
The way the resistance levels on the Ab Scissor change is interesting and took me awhile before I figured out exactly what was happening. There are five resistance levels. When I first saw the easy to pull out knob and five holes I assumed that in some way the machine was adding weight. That is not the case. The Ab Scissor which uses this “Scissor Action“ is based on what is called a “Gravitational Linkage System.“ The concept is simple and complex at the same time. What happens is that my own body weight determines the actual level of resistance. I will give you an example. If I want the resistance to be easy, for beginners, the knob is in the first hole, essentially level 1. If at that moment I weigh 130 pounds the machine uses that weight for the ab movement. If I move it to 2, the machine adjusts itself using the Gravitational Linkage System based on my weight to make it a bit more difficult. When using the Ab Scissor I found level 5 challenging but not impossible. If someone who weighs 200 pounds gets on the machine it adjusts according to that weight.
The machine has to be assembled. There is a video guide that I did not watch. I asked my cousin what it was like to put together and she said easy. She thought it took her perhaps 1/2 an hour.
Jo’ final thoughts:
Body by Jake Ab Scissor is a handy little non-essential machine. I doubt I will ever say that there is an abdominal machine you cannot live without. In spite of “tests“ showing that some machines increase the affects and will give me a 6 pack faster than traditional on the ground crunches, spending over $200 for one machine may be painful.
We are told that all we need is 4 minutes a day for great abs. That may sound like a ridiculous statement. However if you work your abs daily for four minutes you will realize that four minutes can feel like a long time!
Realize as usual that along with the video I mentioned you will get something called Cut the Fat Program which includes a step by step approach to meal planning along with a Cut the Fat Log to track your progress. If you think that you will get that 6 pack without watching what you eat you are kidding yourself. In fact genetics may never allow you to get a 6 pack so hopefully feeling good and being fit and healthy is your goal and not the 6 pack.
Please talk with your doctor before starting an exercise program, if you are a man over 40 or a woman over 50.
Feel free to leave me a question or comment.
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