Although a RipStik may look like a skateboard, it has a couple of key differences. Its wave shape encourages sideways riding and weaving movements, as opposed to the straight line of a skateboard. Most notably, however, the RipStik is self-powered. Once you get on the board, you continue to propel yourself forward by moving your legs, arms and hips.
The RipStik is a fantastic weight loss and toning aid because it requires muscle activation and engagement as well as aerobic exercise. Movement in your thighs, hips, lower legs and feet keeps the board going, so you will be able to develop and build your thigh muscles if you ride your RipStik on a regular basis. You’ll also burn a moderate number of calories. As of mid-2011, no studies have been completed on how many calories a RipStik session might burn, but it is a comparable activity to skateboarding, and HealthStatus.com reports that an hour of skateboarding burns about 365 calories for a 160-lb. person.
Spot reduction involves exercising to lose fat in just one specific area of your body, such as your thighs. Unfortunately, riding a RipStik or doing any other type of activity isn’t likely to encourage weight loss in only your thighs because you can’t pick and choose where to lose weight. The American Council on Exercise points out that the only way to “spot reduce” is to participate in aerobic activity, which will burn fat throughout the body.
If your objective is to strengthen and tone your quadriceps and hamstrings, however, the RipStik may be able to help. The stress you’ll put on those muscles in an effort to balance on the caster board and maintain a constant flow of motion can contribute to building lean muscle mass and giving your thighs a more streamlined look. For the best results, add other exercises that target thighs, such as deadlifts, squats and lunges.
Going for a ride on your RipStik may help you tone up and burn calories, but it’s not the only factor that determines weight loss results. You must consistently burn more calories than you consume to lose weight, and that can require a combination of low-calorie eating and regular exercise. The ACE recommends at least 225 minutes per week of moderate aerobic activity for weight loss, so if you don’t ride that often, supplement with other forms of exercise. Finally, be careful not to eat too many extra calories to “cancel out” those that you burn during workouts.