Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Super Strength Suit

So I've been thinking about these cool weight vests they've got on sale at Dick's Sporting Goods, and I got to thinking, as I always do, "I can do this better if I make one myself."
Key points:
1. Use lead. Its cheap, and very dense, which means a lot of weight in small space. We don't want to look like an puffed up idiot now, do we? Also, lead is quite ductile, so if we needed to bend it to the contours of the body, it wouldn't be difficult to do so.
2. Must be modular. We want to start with a little bit of weight and then work our way up to an enormous load that requires a huge amount of strength.
3. Must be evenly distributed throughout the body. Although a vest is a good start, an accurate suit designed to simulate a heavier body load should have weights in various places. Weights on your thighs, upper and lower arms, possibly the head, middle and lower back, along the crown of the shoulders, and elsewhere. Avoid the lower leg, as excess weight down their does not lead to greater muscle development, only to knee damage.
4. Possibly make rubber connectors between appendages to resist movement. This would help build muscles strength for activities that didn't necessary require vertical loading. An example would be a rubber connector between your tricep and midriff, resisting the motion of raising your arm.

Anyway, it'd be a fun project, and quite a bit more doable than that powered suit I'm trying to design. Probably a lot cheaper too, which would make Mrs. TAE happy. I mentioned that a single actuator for a fingers would cost $119.00, and then told her I'd need 10 per hand, plus another three for the forearm (pronation/supination), and she kinda nixed that one...for now.



Anonymous said...

Remember that the force exerted by an extended spring is not constant, so using rubber connectors will result in low amounts of force near the rest position (leading to minimal muscle increase) and very high amounts of force at the extended position (likely decreasing the range of motion of the wearer)

Meagan said...

Thanks for sharing the information about Dicks Sporting Goods weight vests. I would like to have one.