Excellent for turning traditional moves into asymmetric exercises, the TRX RIP Trainer focuses the resistance on one side of your body…

If you’re looking for the best resistance bands to build core strength, look no further than the TRX RIP Trainer. Here’s how it performed on test.

Men’s Fitness verdict

  • Excellent core training kit
  • Ships with a workout guide
  • One resistance included (medium)
  • Requires ample space to train

How we tested the best resistance bands

Our expert tester Basil Kronfli is an experienced PT and understands what makes a good set of resistance bands. He tested each product through its entire resistance range (including any optional extra bands) and across a wide range of banded exercises. Basil also used all available accessories such as door anchors, leg straps or carabiners for an extended period. He tested and marked each resistance band for its versatility, for the quality of the bands and the handles and for its overall weight range.

TRX RIP Trainer kit

TRX RIP Trainer: features

To look at, the TRX RIP Trainer is a pole with a band on the end, so you’d be forgiven for failing to understand how it could be a core annihilator. But trust me – it is.

Excellent for turning the best traditional resistance band exercises into asymmetric moves, the TRX RIP Trainer focuses the resistance on one side of your body. This forces you to compensate and in turn develop muscles you’d usually lock into with Pilates or other core-focused training.

Inside the recyclable packaging you’ll find the TRX RIP Trainer, a door anchor, a medium strength resistance chord and a workout guide, explaining how to use your new resistance bands. I love that TRX includes a six-year warranty too. Though, it’s worth noting that only one resistance level band ships with the system – the medium chord, which packs 20lb of resistance.

How the TRX RIP Trainer performed on test

If you’re happy to buy bands separately, you can pick up the light chord (15lb), the heavy chord (25lb), the extra-heavy chord (38lb) or the XX-heavy chord, which climbs up to 50lbs of resistance. I only tested the medium, and that provided enough of a challenge for blood pumping, form-focused training in rep ranges of 12 and over. If you are looking for a greater challenge, I’d suggest you go heavier. For rehabilitation and more endurance-focused rep ranges, the light chord would be the way to go, with each additional chord costing around £15.

While the core pole itself is long, at just over a metre, it’s comprised of two halves that screw together to create a solid, single element. Each half features a centre portion that’s coated by a grippy, dense foam material. On one side of the assembled TRX RIP Trainer is the band, and on the other, a loop.

I trained using the door anchor, which secured the band so I could train in my living room. When outdoors or in a gym, the carabiner (clamp) secures onto a fence or metal loop/TRX X-Mount. Wherever you train, the system does require a few clear square meters beyond where you affix the TRX RIP Trainer, as well as relatively high ceilings.

Resistance:20lb (9kg) – 15lb (7kg), 25lb (11kg), 38lb (17kg) and 50lb (23kg) are optional extras
Colours:Black and yellow
Features:Door anchor; carabiner; six-year guarantee