Twist and Shape
This Twist and Shape review is an independent review of this popular product from Thane. We tested the Twist & Shape for 30 days and used it 3 times per week. Find out our full assessment below.
Twist and Shape – What is it?
Marketed primarily as a core exerciser that provides a full body workout, the Twist and Shape by Thane is a body weight workout aid that essentially provides stability when rotating your core through rotation at the hip and shoulders. Similar to the Wondercore 2 (also manufactured by Thane) and many balance boards in the muscles that they target, the key difference with this product is that it provides a lot more stability than you might find with the Wondercore 2 or any kind of balance board.
Although fairly simple in its design, the Twist and Shape features a rotation base for your feet and handle bars that are attached to a stem which keeps everything as an all-in-one setup.
Our first impressions were that this piece of core targeting fitness apparatus is very well made, doesn’t take up a huge amount of space and is actually quite inviting to use.
With a maximum user weight of 150kg and weighing just 15kg itself, this is a product that can be used by all ages, all shapes and all sizes. It is also pretty easy to move around your home and easy to store away but at the same time it is very robust and well solidly made.
Twist and Shape – The Specs
At 60cm x 50cm x 120cm the amount of floor space required for the Twist & Shape is minimal. The height of 120cm is adjustable by up to 17.5cm which means you can find a comfortable height setting for you – this is important as the height of the handles is key to using this for the longer term. There is an LCD display screen built in to the base unit which will display key information including number of repetitions, calories burned and time elapsed.
The foot plates that are built in to the base are made from an anti-slip rubber material which is ideal for maintaining even more stability and the handles are also manufactured from a non-slip soft-grip rubber. The base unit and handle bars offer up to 240 degrees of rotation which is designed to engage the core in a twisting motion.
The design is patented so there is no direct competitor to this exact model and you will find a 14 day nutrition guide and an extensive workout DVD when you unbox it.
The training suggestion from Thane is that you exercise for 20 minutes per day for 3-5 times per week – although you could use this daily if you wished. They also claim that the Twist and Shape can target core muscles as well as the glutes, quads, shoulders, arms and calf muscles – essentially providing a full body workout. We would say that if you are an experienced gym goer who is looking for a complete home full body solution then this is not it – as most of the other muscles are purely providing some secondary support to the main focus here which is the abs.
In terms of a core workout, the Twist and Shape does a fantastic job however and for those who have mobility issues or need extra support for core muscle development then this is a great option.
Twist & Shape In Use
In total we used this piece of equipment for just over 4 weeks and in that time we managed to squeeze in around 14 workouts that lasted the prescribed 20 minutes each. The first thing to point out is that you can manage the difficulty level through time spent on the machine or by the intensity and speed at which you workout. The basic twisting function is enough to provide some stern tests to the abs and obliques and this side to side rotation will leave your core burning after just a few minutes if you haven’t worked on those muscles for a while.
As the machine is fundamentally a bodyweight exercise machine it is quite possible that those who haven’t worked out for a while will need to work up to the 20 minute workout length – and we’d recommend starting with the basic twisting exercise and slowly build the pace up. That being said, the Twist and Shape is perhaps one of the most accessible home exercise machines we have seen as it is easy to use and it is very hard to have the wrong form when using it. This is probably one of the biggest reasons that this piece of equipment enjoys such good feedback from its users and why it elicits such good results.
The workout DVD includes some more advanced exercises that you can perform when working out with the Twist and Shape and they include a quad lunge which is still pretty easy to perform and provides a more cardiovascular workout.
For the more experienced users the Twist and Shape is still going to be a great addition to any kind of ab or core workout regime – however, it certainly is not going to replace a full gym workout regime. Realistically, there is very little on the market that as a standalone machine can replace a gym setup so it would be unrealistic to expect this product to be able to do that – however, if you want something that will allow you to target the abs and obliques in the comfort of your home then adding two to three workouts with the Twist and Shape would be worthwhile.
One thing we would point out is that this product seems to have a lot of users in the over 55 age group. Whilst this certainly doesn’t mean people under the age of 55 shouldn’t use it, we can see why it would appeal to older users. The biggest pull for older users is the stability it provides thanks to the adjustable handles. It is also much easier to perform the reps using this machine than just undertaking traditional crunches.
The Final Verdict
The Twist and Shape is another hit from Thane and we are big fans of it. It won’t be suitable for everyone and for anyone wanting a really intense core workout or looking for a true and full upper and lower body workout then it is probably best to renew that gym membership. However, for those users who want an easy to use core workout aid or something to perform some light cardio work on, or for those who are looking to get back in to a fitness routine after a period of time out, then the Twist and Shape could be ideal.
The build quality is excellent and the support materials are also of very high quality. The user reviews speak for themselves and we did see results after just 4 weeks. Our reviewer had a starting body fat percentage of roughly 13% and after 4 weeks there was a degree of improved ab visibility. Perhaps more importantly than that, the improved performance in core muscle performance when using this machine as well as when performing other exercises where core muscles were acting as stabiliser muscles, there was a noted improvement.
We are more than happy to endorse the Twist and Shape as a quality home workout aid for anyone looking to develop their core muscles.