Throughout the years, I have worked on finding what I thought was the best workout routine for me and my lifestyle. As the years have gone on I have found that I seem to have less and less time to dedicate to myself (really this is a time management issue and I need to get better and prioritizing my time). I know that I am not alone in this and I have found that I have been giving less effort to making sure I am staying fit and healthy enough to do the things I love to do. Exercise is just a part of the health equation, although this was the part I found was lacking in my life as of late. So I dedicated some time to research to find something that I could do in my busy schedule without feeling like I was spending hours and hours away from my projects and family.
What I found was probably not too different from anyone else, Dr. John Jaquish seems to be all over social media with his new product the X3 Bar. If you haven’t seen or heard of it let me tell you a little about it. Basically, John did a lot of research and found that if you use variable resistance your muscle growth produces at a rate that is 3 times faster than using other methods. He has a lot of science-based studies on his site for reference which is pretty interesting. One of the best parts for me is that each daily workout is around 10 minutes is all.
I was very interested in using his product after looking over the studies that he references until I found the price… At this time the X3 Bar is selling for just under $600 and for me, that was too much, especially when I am basically trying this out to see how it goes. So I put on my problem-solving hat and went to work on a solution and came up with a DIY version that is proving to be very good.
I can’t deny that the bar for the X3 bar looks to be built very well, but I went ahead and did some digging and found this bar on Amazon that would do the trick. This bar is very well made and is strong enough to withhold the resistance of the bands. The metal construction will hold up well, the only issue I found was how to connect the bands, on the X3 bar has a hook that holds the bands flat when in use and the GoFit Bar has small carabiners on it which won’t fit wide bands the way I was hoping for which led me to the next solution find.
So I searched as much as I could handle to find a hook similar to the one that is found on the X3 Bar but I’m pretty sure that those were designed especially for the X3 system, so I put on my thinking cap to find a different solution. What I found was larger carabiners, make sure to get real ones so that they can withstand the tension that is put on them (not fake ones, make sure they are for climbing use). These are some of the largest with the best price that I could find. The goal is to use the “top” section that is the widest part of the carabiner to hold the band, keeping the band as flat as possible. I like the blue ones but there are a couple of colors that allow you to customize your look.
This leaves the last part that I purchased, the bands. The X3 Bar has what they say are specially engineered bands that are 50-100 time stronger than normal exercise bands. I’m sure they make a great band product but I have found that these bands have a similar strength rating that the X3 Bar bands state they have. I use the green and purple bands from UPowex for most of my workouts. I have considered purchasing this stronger band from Draper’s Strength for when I feel that these bands aren’t enough for me (which may never happen since I can double up the bands for more resistance).
And there you go!
Now the X3 Bar comes with a board that you use to stand on while doing some of the workouts, I made my own from some scrap wood that I had at the house. As far as the workouts go they can be found on Youtube.com for free. As of the time of this writing, your all in cost would be $89.24 for the whole system which in my book is a big win compared to $600. Let me know if you have found anything better or if this has worked for you like it has for me.
As an Amazon Associate, DDH earns from qualifying purchases
Claim your FREE cattle feed schedule
Get a free nutrition schedule for your cows today!
(without having to pay or rely on a nutritionist)
This schedule is the same one that is being used to produce a $100k/yr. income!
Still using this setup? Like it?
Yes, I am, it is proving to be a great setup.
Outstanding, thank you for the feedback!
I purchased the Go Fit bar and some Iron Woody bands and use an old bamboo cutting board for the ground plane. I have been using for the past 4 weeks doing the X3 workouts and it works great! Seeing awesome results.
Perfect. Thank you for this !
Thanks for posting this! I wanted to purchase the x3 but $500-600 is a lot!!
The go fit bar is rated at 200lbs. You could switch to the Instar bar rated at 800# and cost $29.95 on Amazon saving a few bucks on the setup.
Great suggestion Jack, here is a link to the Innstar Bar
The Instar Bar also comes in a 2 piece portable that is rated at 800#
How is this still working for you? Also I would suggest looking into Steel Series bands as that’s what X3 originally shipped with.
It’s working great, I had to buy another couple of bands because I grew stronger than the current bands I had. The ones I picked up are from Draper Strength I added the Blue and Orange band from them. I have yet to try the Serious Steel bands though, do you have experience with them?
There’s also a system called X Bar that is much more reasonably priced vs the X3 Bar. I’ve been using the X Bar with up to 300lbs of bands for the last 9-10 months and it’s held up great.
I wonder if you are able to get the same resistance from a tubular elastic or I guess as much resistance, 300lbs of bands is pretty good though. Just curious to see if anyone knows what the difference in strength between elastic tubing and elastic bands are.
Dicks sporting goods has pretty high quality tubes that go up to 100lbs.
I use a mixture of tubes and bands, the dicks tubes work really well,. They’re just a bit too long for certain exercises so I use the bands doubled up to make them shorter.
Doing a “bench press” on the x3 bar involves placing the bands around the upper back and pressing forward with the bar. I’m trying to determine if that viable with your set up or are the bands too long to provide much resistance through the movement.
Hey Jack, I had the same question. What I have found is that I am still getting great growth in the chest, with all of the movements you could get to where there is no resistance left in the band. I make sure to not allow the tension to go slack when coming “down” and if you watch closely that is the same strategy instructed in the videos. I’ve struggled in the past to see pectoral muscle growth, but with this set up and going to failure I’ve been pleased to see a good change.
I hope this helps and your question. In short I have not seen an issue in doing the chest exercise at all.
Thanks Tyson– I went ahead and built the set up using the Instar bar, large caribingers (sic), and the Champion bands. I did the chest press using the green band (heaviest) which was ok, but not real challenging until I added the purple band. THEN it got challenging. With the other movements I used either green or purple by themselves. I’m still experimenting just get a baseline from which to measure my gains.
I went to YouTube and accessed Dr Jaquish ”s 35 instructional videos.
Thanks for your advice. BTW, my total cost of the rig was $78 and change.
Jack, I’m glad to hear it seems to be going well. I too needed more resistance for the chest press and decided to try a bigger band from Draper Strength, I have a link in my reply to Judah’s comment. I use the orange band from them and it has been much better.
I’m glad this saved you a few hundred bucks as well. ?
Well, after much research and application, I came up with my solution. I got the Instar one-piece bar, rated at 800#, and replaced the large caribingers with a pair of 2-inch garage hooks from Home Depot. They make changing the bands easier. I had to wrestle with the carbingers too much in between movements. Then I changed from the Champion bands to the Sunpow bands to get more resistance. The heaviest resistance on the champion band was 125#, whereas it’s 170# on the Sunpow. I returned the carbingers and champion bands to Amazon and got a refund. Now I don’t have to stack bands to get the needed resistance, plus I go from one band to the next without having to hassle with the carbingers. My workouts are a lot more efficient and effective.
Good idea on the hooks, do you have an example of the garage hold you used? My concern was the force placed on the hooks during the workouts, but garage hooks probably would hold up.
I’m also curious about what kind of garage hooks you used and how to connect them.
Hey Tyson, thanks for the great suggestions. Been looking at setting something up like this with the current pandemic closing all the gyms.
Question for you, for increased load do you just use multiple of the bands at once or are you pretty much just going to need a stronger band? I ask as some of my lifts are quite high, but that would be no problem if multiple bands are effective.
Sorry for the noob question, this is the first I’ve even considered bands. Thanks!
Hey Josh, no need to feel like this is a noob question, adding bands will help resistance. I did this for a little while for chest press. Ultimately I decided to go to a stranger band for ease of band placement/getting the set ready. I don’t know your situation but you may be surprised at how storing some of these bands can get. Let me know if I can answer any other questions.
Ha! I did the same thing, but I purchased industrial clips from local hardware store. It works great.
I’d love to see/know what specifically you used. Thanks!
Looking for viable replacements for the instabar or go fit bar. Not in stock until late May.
Here is an alternative that I have been considering trying out, they were out of stalk for a while, but no need for clips! https://amzn.to/2yzjAOr let me know how this works for you.
Hi, Tyson. Great solution. Could you share a pic of the base you put together? That’s the only part of this I’m having trouble figuring out.
Hey Philip, I ended up not using a base after a little bit, I found that for me at least it was not needed. I am not sure where it ended up.
What are folks using for a standing board? Seems like a piece of 2×6 or other would have sharp edges that would eventually wear down your bands. I wonder if some engineered siding would work here at all. Also, someone mentioned above about using open-ended garage hooks…i’d like to see how that was utilized because swapping bands can be a chore.