Good, portable workout kit is hard to find. Yes, a TRX slung from a tree is a fine thing indeed, and even a chunky resistance band will let you do some curls in a pinch, but for exercises like the deadlift, overhead squat and more complex movements, options are scarce.
But wait! Now there’s a bit of kit that promises to improve your mobility, speed your recovery and improve your performance across a variety of sports…and, uh, it’s a stick. Wait, what?
Okay, so there’s more than just a stick in a box going on here. First of all, the ProBar – as it’s known – breaks down into a pair of sticks (with optional weighted ends) allowing you to swing or move them independently to mimic any sport from golf to kendo. More importantly, either the full-size stick or the half-sized version can be twisted and pulled apart, offering a decent chunk of resistance as you press, pull, squat or lunge with the bar in any number of positions.
It’s slightly similar to the effect you’d get from using a resistance band, but the bar’s a whole lot harder to pull apart, and gives much more solid feedback – you’ll know whether you’ve hit maximum stretch or not – allowing you to add much more muscular activation across a whole range of movements.
ProBar’s website offers a selection of beginner-friendly mobility routines, and from personal experience – yes, we tried one in the park – they’re tougher than you might imagine. Oh, and by the way: you feel a lot like Deadpool when you’re tucking them back into your rucksack. Worth a go.