Bandbell Earthquake Bar
User Review( votes)
The Bandbell Earthquake bar using oscillating kinetic energy to rehabilitate shoulder injures and build shoulder strength.
- Excellent Build Factor.
- Plenty of old-school exercises become challenging in a new way.
- Anchors and Resistance Bands offer different levels of difficulty.
- A lightweight bar that’s easy to store.
- Loading weight can be tricky for one person.
- The loadable anchors can snag safety straps on a power rack.
- The packaging of the bar leaves something to be desired.
The Bandbell EarthQuake Bar is my go-to bar for high-repetition, low-weight, bench presses. I suffer from regular shoulder pain and I’m always worried about causing damage during my daily workout routines. I first learned about Oscillating Kenetic Energy from my personal trainer. My first introduction to the restorative power of OKE workouts involved a broomstick, several resistance bands, and a few kettlebells. I was immediately hooked and decided to take the plunge to something better.
I recently purchased the bar as a discounted package that includes the Earthquake Bar, Strap-N-Hooks, Anchor Loaders, and Minibands. The entire package costs just over $400 with shipping. In comparison, my Rogue Ohio Bar was just under $400 with shipping.
The Bandbell EarthQuake bar, which measures 80-inches, arrives fully assembled and ready to use. Overall, Bandbell did an okay job packing the bar. However, the newly installed strap-n-hooks were not well wrapped, causing some scratching along my brand-new bar. It wasn’t bad enough to complain but the lazy wrapping job was annoying for such a high-end specialty bar.
Once I removed the bar from its packaging, it was ready to go. I started by attaching the Anchor Loaders and then adding several of my Rogue Echo Bumper Plates into the mix. I placed 10-pound and 25-pound bumpers on each side. If you’ve never used this type of bar, starting with around 80-pounds is a good starting point. The bar itself weighs just under 7-pounds while the anchors add only a tiny bit of additional weight.
I started with some basic bench presses and I immediately began to shake while attempting to stabilize my movements. Because I was using the strap and hook system, the bar wasn’t maximizing OKE but it was enough to get me acclimated with the bar. One thing you’ll notice upon first use is the width of the Earthquake bar. The bar diameter is 1.5-inches which requires a wider grip than a standard Olympic bar.
Pro-tip, if you want to maximize oscillating kinetic energy, only bring the Bandbell EarthQuake bar to within one-inch of your chest and then push through for another rep. Resting the bar on your chest will remove some of the wobbling and reduce the purpose of the bar.
One issue I noticed occurred because of the safety straps on my Rogue RM-4 power rack. If I didn’t move the safety straps all the way to the lowest possible setting, the anchors on my Bandbell bar would sometimes snag on the strap. I’m not overly worried about safety when using the bar because I lift maybe 140 pounds as my maximum bench press with this speciality bar.
With that being said, it’s an annoying issue that could have been solved by moving the anchors out just a tiny bit further.
The anchors provided a decent experience but where this bar really excels is the use of mini-resistance bands to create more instability. I have been using my 10 kg (22 lbs) and 16 kg (35 lbs) Rep Fitness Kettlebells with my Bandbell mini-resistance bands. I find that the 35-pound option offers a good amount of instability but using both kettlebells at the same time really makes me work for each rep. I have banged up my equipment quite a bit because the kettlebells knock together which is something you might want to consider if you’re worried about scuffing up your gym equipment.
I do have one unavoidable annoyance with this bar, unlike a regular barbell or specialty bar, you can’t load one side of this bar and then move onto the other side that’s already resting in a J-Cup. This is because the bamboo bar, as it’s sometimes called, weighs under 10-pounds and therefore can’t support much weight one-sided weight on its own. My solution is to get two of my kettlebells ready and then while holding the middle of the Earthquake Bar, loading one side before moving onto the other side. If I’m using dual kettlebells I add the second set after the bar is stabilized.
Outside of bench presses, I also use this bar for some wider grip rows and bicep curls which really forces me to work on my grip strength. I’ve also found a nice benefit when bar squatting because the bar is more comfortable on my shoulders and the movement provided by the bar adds a nice layer of stability training to my routine.
If you really want to test your ability to stabilize muscle groups during exercises, load the bar up with even a little bit of weight and simply try to walk from one side of the room to the other side while holding the bar over your head.
The Bandbell EarthQuake bar is often used for rehabbing injuries and I fully understand why that’s the main use case. My shoulder pain has been greatly reduced because I started using this bar at least three times every week. I’ve also combined the bar with my Titan Multi-Grip Camber Bar which uses a neutral grip to reduce shoulder pain.
I believe anyone can benefit from using this bar. I don’t buy into the marketing gimmicks that tout OKE on its own but I’ve seen the results for myself and thousands of other buyers have raved about the same type of results.
Here’s a great demonstration of the Bandbell Earthquake bar in action.
You can check out the bar HERE.