Review: Plankster from Stealth Body Fitness

It is easy to dismiss the Plankster ($99) from Stealth Body Fitness as a child's toy if you don't pay attention. Given the sub-$100 price tag, you might think it is something you could get for the kids to keep them busy. But Stealth sent me a review unit to try and let me tell you, it's a serious piece of fitness equipment despite the fact that it costs less than the sales tax on a Peloton! Plus it exercises multiple muscle groups. And it does so in a fun, entertaining manner, with no membership fees required!

So what is the Plankster? It is a durable cushioned platform that rests on a 360-degree rotating sphere. You place your forearms on the sides, where the padding is, and place your phone (Apple or Android) toward the top in a receptacle that accommodates just about any phone, even in a rugged case.

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Plankster

Using their app you can select from a variety of surprisingly fun and well-designed games that respond to the phone's built-in gyroscope. That means when you move your body and the Plankster, you control the on-screen character or cursor. It seems simple but it can be quite challenging to try to get a good score. You could play the games without the Plankster just for fun, but it gets tougher when you have to move your whole body to control the game. It is a lot like hang gliding (which is actually one of the free games) but instead of gliding and letting the wind do the work, your body is getting a workout.

The $99 model is well-built with comfortable padding, but if you spend $50 more, you get a wider planking platform with cushioning throughout the platform and a one year warranty. Beginners can operate the Plankster with their knees bent, on the ground, and then advance to toes only when they get stronger. Stealth is an appropriate name; it's quite a clever and almost deceptive way to get anyone to work out just by playing a game with their body as the controller. My only wish would be some form of voice activation so I could switch between games or restart without having to use my hands. The free games were fine for me, but they do offer premium games for a subscription of $24.99/year.

Pros

  • High-quality, interactive games for iOS and Android
  • Exercises multiple muscle groups
  • Well-built, comfortable padding
  • Surprisingly quick to learn
  • 360-degree movement

Cons

  • Voice activation might help with in-use app control
  • Premium games by subscription only

Final Verdict

The Plankster from Stealth Body Fitness is a great way to get started with fitness while playing fun games!

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Author Details

Todd Bernhard's picture

Author Details

Todd Bernhard

Todd Bernhard is a bestselling (6+ million downloads) award-winning (AARP, About.com, BestAppEver.com, Digital Hollywood, and Verizon) developer and founder of NoTie.NET, an app developer specializing in Talking Ringtone apps including AutoRingtone. And his profile photo is of the last known sighting of Mr. Bernhard wearing a tie, circa 2007!

An iPhone is almost always attached to his hip or in his pocket, but over the years, Mr. Bernhard has owned an Apple Newton, a Motorola Marco, an HP 95LX, a Compaq iPaq, a Palm Treo, and a Nokia e62. In addition to writing for iPhone Life, Mr. Bernhard has written for its sister publications, PocketPC Magazine and The HP Palmtop Paper.