A "thruster" exercise performed on a flywheel training device.

Flywheel training is a type of strength training where the resistance required for muscle activation is generated by the inertia of a flywheel instead of gravity from weights as in traditional weight training.

In contrast to weight training, flywheel training offers variable resistance throughout the range of motion, which facilitates isoinertial training and eccentric overload. Flywheel training is shown to lead to improvements of strength and power, hypertrophy, muscle activation, muscle length, and tendon stiffness. This in turn can improve athletic performance in speed, jump height, change of direction and resilience to injury.[1][2]


An early scientific research paper on flywheel training was conducted by researchers Hansen and Lindhard at the University of Copenhagen in 1924 and looked at the maximum realizable work of the elbow flexors.[3][4]

After that, flywheel resistance training was studied in space travelers exposed to microgravity environments to fight the effects of sarcopenia and bone mineral density loss,[5][6] started at Karolinska Institute in the 1990s funded by NASA and ESA. Since then, flywheel training has been studied in different populations like youth[7][8][9][10] and professional athletes,[11][12][13] as well as older adults.[14][15][16][17]

Current evidence suggests that flywheel training-based training is superior to gravity-based training for increasing muscle strength, power, and hypertrophy.[18][19][20]

Flywheel training was commercialized in the 2010s by Exxentric and others, and has since gained wide-spread adoption in professional sports.[21]


  1. ^ Wonders, Jaap (2019-12-14). "Flywheel Training in Musculoskeletal Rehabilitation: A Clinical Commentary". International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy. 14 (6): 994–1000. doi:10.26603/ijspt20190994. PMC 6878857. PMID 31803531.
  2. ^ Smith, Joel (2018). Speed Strength: A Comprehensive Guide to Biomechanics, Demands and Training Methodology for Linear Speed. Just fly sports. p. 202. ISBN 978-1720694625.
  3. ^ Correa, Fredrik (2014-12-09). "What Every Coach Ought to Know About Flywheel Training". Freelap. Retrieved 2022-04-10.
  4. ^ Hansen, T E; Lindhard, J (1924-03-14). "The maximum realisable work of the flexors of the elbow". The Journal of Physiology. 58 (4–5): 314–317. doi:10.1113/jphysiol.1924.sp002133. PMC 1405532. PMID 16993667.
  5. ^ Berg, HE; Tesch, A (August 1994). "A gravity-independent ergometer to be used for resistance training in space". Aviation, Space, and Environmental Medicine. 65 (8): 752–756. OCLC 105722207. PMID 7980338. S2CID 23594693.
  6. ^ Jones, Thomas W.; et al. (2019-05-16). "Optimization of Exercise Countermeasures for Human Space Flight: Operational Considerations for Concurrent Strength and Aerobic Training". Frontiers in Physiology. 10: 584. doi:10.3389/fphys.2019.00584. PMC 6532362. PMID 31156461.
  7. ^ Drury, B.; Ratel, S.; Clark, C. C.; Fernandes, J. F.; Moran, J.; Behm, D. G. (2019). "Eccentric Resistance Training in Youth: Perspectives for Long-Term Athletic Development". Journal of Functional Morphology and Kinesiology. 4 (4): 70. doi:10.3390/jfmk4040070. PMC 7739302. PMID 33467385.
  8. ^ Westblad, N.; Petré, H.; Kårström, A.; Psilander, N.; Björklund, G. (2021). "The Effect of Autoregulated Flywheel and Traditional Strength Training on Training Load Progression and Motor Skill Performance in Youth Athletes". International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 18 (7): 3479. doi:10.3390/ijerph18073479. PMC 8038127. PMID 33801621.
  9. ^ Stojanović, M. D.; Mikić, M.; Drid, P.; Calleja-González, J.; Maksimović, N.; Belegišanin, B.; Sekulović, V. (2021). "Greater Power but Not Strength Gains Using Flywheel Versus Equivolumed Traditional Strength Training in Junior Basketball Players". International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 18 (3): 1181. doi:10.3390/ijerph18031181. PMC 7908554. PMID 33572738.
  10. ^ di Cagno, Alessandra; Iuliano, Enzo; Buonsenso, Andrea; Giombini, Arrigo; Di Martino, Giulia; Parisi, Attilio; Calcagno, Giuseppe; Fiorilli, Giovanni (19 November 2020). "Effects of Accentuated Eccentric Training vs Plyometric Training on Performance of Young Elite Fencers". Journal of Sports Science & Medicine. 19 (4): 703–713. PMC 7675629. PMID 33239944.
  11. ^ Sánchez-Díaz, S.; Yanci, J.; Castillo, D.; Scanlan, A. T.; Raya-González, J. (2020). "Effects of Nutrition Education Interventions in Team Sport Players. A Systematic Review". Nutrients. 12 (12): 3664. doi:10.3390/nu12123664. PMC 7760400. PMID 33260504.
  12. ^ Maroto-Izquierdo, S.; García-López, D.; De Paz, J. A. (2017). "Functional and Muscle-Size Effects of Flywheel Resistance Training with Eccentric-Overload in Professional Handball Players". Journal of Human Kinetics. 60: 133–143. doi:10.1515/hukin-2017-0096. PMC 5765793. PMID 29339993.
  13. ^ McNeill, C.; Beaven, C. M.; McMaster, D. T.; Gill, N. (2019). "Eccentric Training Interventions and Team Sport Athletes". Journal of Functional Morphology and Kinesiology. 4 (4): 67. doi:10.3390/jfmk4040067. PMC 7739426. PMID 33467382.
  14. ^ Kowalchuk, K.; Butcher, S. (2019). "Eccentric Overload Flywheel Training in Older Adults". Journal of Functional Morphology and Kinesiology. 4 (3): 61. doi:10.3390/jfmk4030061. PMC 7739307. PMID 33467376.
  15. ^ Sañudo, Borja; González-Navarrete, Ángeles; Álvarez-Barbosa, Francisco; de Hoyo, Moisés; del Pozo, Jesús; Rogers, Michael E. (1 June 2019). "Effect of Flywheel Resistance Training on Balance Performance in Older Adults. A Randomized Controlled Trial". Journal of Sports Science & Medicine. 18 (2): 344–350. PMC 6543991. PMID 31191105.
  16. ^ Bruseghini, P.; Capelli, C.; Calabria, E.; Rossi, A. P.; Tam, E. (2019). "Effects of High-Intensity Interval Training and Isoinertial Training on Leg Extensors Muscle Function, Structure, and Intermuscular Adipose Tissue in Older Adults". Frontiers in Physiology. 10: 1260. doi:10.3389/fphys.2019.01260. PMC 6794371. PMID 31649552.
  17. ^ Sañudo, Borja; de Hoyo, Moisés; McVeigh, Joseph G. (January 2022). "Improved Muscle Strength, Muscle Power, and Physical Function After Flywheel Resistance Training in Healthy Older Adults: A Randomized Controlled Trial". Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research. 36 (1): 252–258. doi:10.1519/JSC.0000000000003428. PMID 32040028. S2CID 211073409.
  18. ^ Petré, Henrik; Wernstål, Fredrik; Mattsson, C. Mikael (2018-12-13). "Effects of Flywheel Training on Strength-Related Variables: a Meta-analysis". Sports Medicine - Open. 4 (1): 55. doi:10.1186/s40798-018-0169-5. PMC 6292829. PMID 30547232. S2CID 56485869.
  19. ^ Maroto-Izquierdo, Sergio; García-López, David; Fernandez-Gonzalo, Rodrigo; Moreira, Osvaldo C.; González-Gallego, Javier; de Paz, José A. (October 2017). "Skeletal muscle functional and structural adaptations after eccentric overload flywheel resistance training: a systematic review and meta-analysis". Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport. 20 (10): 943–951. doi:10.1016/j.jsams.2017.03.004. PMID 28385560.
  20. ^ Illera-Domínguez, Víctor; et al. (2018-09-10). "Early Functional and Morphological Muscle Adaptations During Short-Term Inertial-Squat Training". Frontiers in Physiology. 9: 1265. doi:10.3389/fphys.2018.01265. PMC 6139363. PMID 30246805.
  21. ^ "History of Flywheel Training". Exxentric. Retrieved 2022-04-10.