Many of us are finding our COVID bodies do not match our ideal image of ourselves. While working out has long been the only way to increase our abdominal (and other) muscles, we now have new technology to help you gain muscle without hitting the gym or doing 100s of crunches. Two new types of devices induce supra-muscular contractions that build muscle of the abdomen, thighs or buttock far faster than we can on our own.
Electrical and electromagnetic stimulation devices deliver impulses to the muscles targeted and contract them much more strongly than we are capable of doing by ourselves. We place small pads over the muscles which you would like to work on and adjust the energy to your tolerance. While you stay on one of our procedure beds watching Netflix or working on your computer, the device works out your muscles in a 30 – 45 minute session. Studies have shown both a loss of fat and significant increase in muscle volume after as little as four sessions over a two-week period. Initial studies on the electromagnetic stimulation devices from Dr. Jacob, a former SkinCare Physicians fellow, demonstrated an average waist circumference loss of 4.37 cm and an abdominal muscle size increase of more than 20%. Additional studies confirmed these early results and also showed significant increase in the upper buttocks muscles when those were targeted.
In a study of the electrical stimulation device truSculpt Flex, done last year at SkinCare Physicians’ research department, we found that not only was muscle size increased, but functional strength was also dramatically improved after a series of treatments. When the abdomen was targeted, static “planking” times increased 43% and when thigh muscles were targeted, single leg wall sit times improved a shocking 119%. Anecdotally, we have been very impressed with the results to date as most of our patients and staff who have had the treatment notice significant improvement in all sorts of activities (golf, tennis, bicycling, etc.) as well as an improvement in lower back pain issues.
While results do not last forever, one study showed that significant improvement persisted for a full year. In order to maintain optimal results however, we recommend additional touch up treatment sessions roughly every three months.
These muscle-building devices may also be combined with fat reduction treatments such as CoolSculpting to really change the shape of one’s body. Reducing the overlying fat layer also helps highlight the new stronger muscles.
So, in addition to good diet and regular exercise, the dermatologists at SkinCare Physicians have a number of ways to help make your body something you want to show off rather than hide.