I’m just going to throw this out there: I’m not big on going to the gym. In my college days I had no problem stopping by with girlfriends to get in a sweat-inducing workout while listening to Lady Gaga. It was gal-pal time and it was fun. Now if I have a free moment the last thing I want to do is go alone to the gym and try to lose the weight that seems to have snuck up on me over the years. Personally, I’d rather stay at home in my pajamas and let the pounds melt off through the sheer power of wishful thinking. And now I can do that—sort of. A new workout system is taking all the machines we love at the gym and turning them into one mobile, compact unit that can be used at home—so at the very least I can still stay in my pajamas.
Disq is a personal gym that will give your body a full workout from head to toe when and where you choose. The point of the system is to allow users that may not have easy access to a full gym, prefer to workout at home, or want to train on their own schedule, the ability to exercise at their leisure. Developed by Robbert Boekema, a competitive athlete from a family of Olympic speed skaters, the original inspiration was about finding a better way for him and his teammates to work out consistently between travel, competitions and a demanding training schedule. During a skiing trip, when pulling the retractable cord on his ski pass, he felt a resistance, and the rest, as they say, is history.
With a system of loops and pulleys, the Disq is surprisingly easy to use and almost archaic in design, but that simplicity is part of its appeal. This isn’t the next Bowflex or Shake Weight—you don’t need to be a powerhouse or settle for a low-energy workout, this covers all fitness levels. You can adjust your resistance as needed and use the system in conjunction with almost any workout, be it cardio or weight training. Since it claims to be a replacement for a gym, we had to give it a go, just to see if it would live up to the hype.
When you first unpack the Disq system the very first thing you’ll notice is its weight. This thing is not a toy, it’s a hefty piece of machinery that’s about to give you a serious workout. It is ready to go out of the box, but before you strap it on and get tangled in resistance bands (guilty), take a look at the instructional videos. The brand does an amazing job of walking you through everything from initial usage to cardio and strength training. Download the app for more videos, audio cues, training and fitness plans—you’ll be more inclined to finish your workouts if you have to log them daily.
When I first used the system I had a lot of trouble getting the belt and ankle straps to stay put. In the middle of my workout I would feel tugging at my hips and ankles, and while you’re bound to feel some pull, as those are your grounding points, it was just too distracting. With some tinkering and a little advice from the Disq team, I got it to work. It seems that wearing the belt low on your hips was not a suggestion. Pull that sucker down—the lower and tighter the better, it makes for a much more stable experience.
Other than my initial belt fiasco, the Disq was easy to use, gave me a serious workout and I was able to do it all in the comfort of my own living room (while catching up on House of Cards). I didn’t crank that dial up to the eighth setting in my workout, but I did give it a few turns just to test it out, and I have no problem admitting that I needed my boyfriend’s help to pull it out—which only reconfirmed my first assumptions that was a serious piece of equipment. It’s great that Disq can replace trips to the gym, but one of the best things about the device is it's ability to adapt to your (hopefully) ever-changing fitness levels. And if you’re working on a goal this year (be it weight loss or maintaining what you already have), that can be one of your most important assets.
Disq is available online and is priced from $199-$299. For the next two weeks, JustLuxe readers can get 15% off their purchase with code “JustLuxe”.