Richard E. Butts

Engineering, Artwork, Competition, For the Fun of It

A Pedestal Design for the Total Gym®

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Project Overview

The Total Gym 1000 series is a terrific piece of exercise equipment for strengthening the muscles used in the canoe and kayak paddling motion. It allows a large variety of arm motions and requires engaging the torso and back while using the arms. Some people using the Total Gym for paddling-related exercises find that the exercise resistance available in the product is too small. This project provides details of a pedestal that increases the exercise resistance. The exercise resistance comes from the angle of the platform and the weight on the platform. Increasing the exercise resistance can be done either by increasing the platform’s angle so that a larger percent of the user’s weight is lifted or by adding weight to the platform via attachment of a bar at the bottom edge of the platform for the addition of barbell plates or by doing both. Here are drawings and photos of a pedestal I made to increase the platform’s angle and with it the exercise resistance. Along with the increased height the pedestal also improves the lateral stability by increasing the width of the base by 68% (from 16” to 27”). I have used this pedestal for about three years and I found it is stable and rigid. I’m quite happy with it. The motivation for increasing the platform’s angle via this pedestal is an alternative to the method used by Mr. Marc Gillespie (principal of Forge Racing). Marc has the upper end of his Total Gym attached to a steel pole in his basement. The pole is a structural support of the house, is about 4” in diameter and is commonly used in house construction in this area. My house also has such support poles but there are none in a location convenient for placing the Total Gym.

Click to enlarge the cover page.Total Gym Pedestal Cover Page


Click to enlarge the table of contentsTotal Gym Pedestal Table of Contents