Planet Fitness has a heavenly machine in the Black Card Spa Area. But it’s not a tanning booth, it’s a red light therapy booth. This machine is also known as the Beauty Angel or Planet Fitness Total Body Enhancement machine.
How does it work? Is Total Body Enhancement worth the membership at Planet Fitness, specifically the Black Card that provides access to the machine? Or is this just another scheme to generate more fees?
And what is Total Body Enhancement at Planet Fitness?
This article goes over all the details on Total Body Enhancement, Red Light Therapy, and the Planet Fitness Beauty Angel system.
- 1 How Does Planet Fitness Total Body Enhancement Work?
- 2 What Is The Beauty Angel?
- 3 Benefits of Light Therapy
- 4 Total Body Enhancement Pros and Cons
- 5 What are the Side Effects of Red Light Therapy?
- 6 Total Body Enhancement Frequently Asked Questions
- 6.1 Should You Do Red Light Therapy Before or After Workout?
- 6.2 Do You Get a Tan with Red Light Therapy?
- 6.3 Do You Need a Membership to Use Planet Fitness Light Therapy?
- 6.4 What Do You Wear in a Total Body Enhancement Machine?
- 6.5 What Do You Do With Your Hair?
- 6.6 What about Eye Protection?
- 6.7 Total Body Enhancement and Tattoos
- 6.8 How to Stand in Total Body Enhancement
- 7 Conclusion
How Does Planet Fitness Total Body Enhancement Work?
Planet Fitness is one of the most popular gyms in the world, with a great attitude and a friendly, non-judgmental ethos. It’s a perfect place for people who want to lose weight and improve their bodies.
PF has a couple of different membership levels. There’s the basic level, which allows access to the standard set of equipment. Then there’s the Black Card membership, which gives you the right to invite guests, access to free fitness training, HydroMassage chairs and beds, PF tanning, and their red light therapy booth.
The red light therapy booth, known as the Beauty Angel, is a popular addition to PF’s line. At first glance, it looks similar to a tanning booth, but the similarities stop there.
Instead of UV lights, it makes use of infra-red lights that target the whole body.
Why Would You Want to Use Red Light Therapy?
Let’s look at a bit of the science.
With more of it, you get better cellular activity.
Red light therapy is used for the rejuvenation of skin cells. It is commonly used for various cosmetic issues such as wrinkles and stretch marks.
The Beauty Angel booth combines red light and a vibrating plate that tones the body. There are different programs available, suitable for beginners and pros. The vibrations provide physiological training for the muscles of the legs, back, and abdomen.
Optional music also plays in the booth to make it a more relaxing experience. The combined technologies help burn calories, prevent cellulite, and improve circulation.
That’s a great mix!
Daily use of this device, in combination with exercise and proper nutrition, eventually leads to weight loss and a more toned body.
What Is The Beauty Angel?
This is the red light therapy booth found at most Planet Fitness locations.
The company has been in business for decades, and they work with the latest technologies to provide innovative products.
The most common Beauty Angel models at Planet Fitness are the RVT 30, which we discuss in-depth in our Beauty Angel RVT30 review. This model combines two technologies in one unit to help the body look and feel great.
The two technologies in the Total Body Enhancement machine are red light therapy and vibration technology.
To use the machine, you go inside the booth for about 12 minutes before or after your workout.
The Total Body Enhancement machine is a great tool to improve your workout routine. The vibrating action of the plates, combined with the red light therapy, helps in the production of ATP (adenosine triphosphate) or energy for the cells.
With more cellular energy, you’ll be ready for even the toughest workout session.
The red light therapy machine at Planet Fitness also aids in post-workout muscle recovery. It helps reduce joint pain and inflammation.
The Total Body Enhancement Machine is a also great post-workout recovery option.
If you’re still not convinced about adding red light therapy treatments to your regimen, here are more reasons to help you change your mind:
Supports Burning of Fat
When the body has more energy due to the effects of red light therapy, you’ll be able to endure more intense workouts.
Instead of sticking to low-intensity workouts, you will be able to level up your workout intensity.
Helps In Muscle Growth
Aside from burning fat, the added energy can help with muscle growth. Even if you don’t love high-intensity cardio and prefer strengthening exercises, the added energy still helps.
It helps you push to finish your entire workout.
Overall Good Feeling at the Gym
After completing an exhausting workout, it’s possible to feel energetic! Whether that’s the result of red light therapy before or after your workout, that energy boost can help you feel better.
It gives you a good feeling and additional energy that carries throughout the day. This extra energy can lead to further burning of calories and fat.
Benefits of Light Therapy
Red light therapy is also known as photobiomodulation, laser light therapy, and low-level light therapy (LLLT). This technique is growing in popularity, and many researchers and aestheticians sing the praises of its effectiveness.
The benefits of light therapy are quite compelling, and it has a variety of uses.
Look, the average person spends only 7% of their time outdoors. That’s it! In prior time periods, humans would be outside almost all day and would get exposed to much more light than we get exposed to.
Light Therapy acts as a supplement to bring more of that much-needed light to the body.
Red light therapy offers many benefits. Among them are:
Effective Pain Reduction
A clinical trial, which lasted for two years, of patients undergoing infrared light treatments for oral mucositis, was conducted. The trial found that 96% of patients found pain relief.
In a separate study, the effectiveness of low-level laser therapy (LLLT) with regard to adult pain due to musculoskeletal disorders was also tested. This study also found that it can effectively reduce pain in adult patients.
Enhances Wound Healing
Many studies of red light therapy found that it can speed wound healing and tissue repair, specifically skin wounds. A study concluded that light therapy stimulates healing, reduces inflammation, and rejuvenates the skin.
Reverses Signs Of Aging
Red light therapy may be most known for reversing or slowing down signs of aging. Damaged skin due to UV light from tanning beds or the sun can increase the rate of skin aging and produce fine lines and wrinkles.
A study on the effects of red light therapy on photodamaged skin found that light therapy resulted in thicker collagen fibers and softer, smoother skin with fewer wrinkles.
Improved Joint Health
Due to red light therapy’s capability to stimulate collagen production, there are now studies testing its application on rheumatoid arthritis patients. In separate studies, it has been found that red light therapy can relieve pain for those with rheumatoid arthritis and Achilles tendinitis.
Reduces Body Fatigue And Depression
Another benefit of red light therapy is that it can combat depression and fatigue.
This is similar to what is found using Happy Lights (aka SAD lights).
Total Body Enhancement Pros and Cons
Here are some pros and cons of the Total Body Enhancement system:
- Short therapy session (12 minutes)
- Works the muscles on the arms, legs, glutes, and abdomen
- Improves complexion
- Makes skin more elastic
- Smoothes skin
- Speeds up metabolism
- Improves blood circulation
- Helps relieve stress
- Only Available For Black Card Membership Holders
- Weight limit of 300 lbs
- Not for pregnant women, those under medication, or those with pacemakers
- Not for those who had a recent surgery
What are the Side Effects of Red Light Therapy?
The use of red light therapy is generally safe and side effects are minimal. That said, side effects can still happen.
Side effects due to red light therapy are usually short-term and minor. The most common side effects users may experience are:
These side effects are usually due to the glare of the red light. It’s best to use protective goggles like the ones used in tanning beds to protect your eyes from the light.
The side effects may be overheating. Infrared light is thermal and can cause a burn.
But it’s not the same burn that you get with UV lights in a tanning bed.
Overheating can be avoided by sticking to the session time limit.
Total Body Enhancement Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some common questions related to Total Body Enhancement at Planet Fitness.
Should You Do Red Light Therapy Before or After Workout?
Try it both ways and see what works best for your circumstances, body type, and goals.
Some do it before their workout to get more energy for the workout.
Others do it after the workout routine for recovery.
Do You Get a Tan with Red Light Therapy?
No, red light therapy does not make you tan. Red light tanning is simply a coined term to describe basking in red light for restorative purposes.
There is no UV light involved in red light therapy, so the melanin isn’t stimulated. Infrared light is on the opposite side of the spectrum from UV light and is not harmful.
Do You Need a Membership to Use Planet Fitness Light Therapy?
You need a Black Card Membership at Planet Fitness gym. However, you can bring a guest with you each time if you have a Black Card Membership. So if you have a friend with a Black Card, they should be able to get you in to let you try the Beauty Angel, Hydrotherapy, and the other Black Card Spa perks.
If you end up not loving Planet Fitness, you can see how to cancel your membership here.
What Do You Wear in a Total Body Enhancement Machine?
If you only want to use the machine because of the vibrating platform, and not the red light therapy portion, then you could wear just about anything you like. The muscles in your body will still relax and contract as a reaction to the vibrations no matter what you wear.
But assuming you want to take full advantage of what the machine has to offer, you should carefully choose your attire. The goal here is to have as much area in your body as possible exposed to the red light.
The best thing to wear to expose all areas of your body is… nothing at all. Some staff members may instruct you to go naked if you ask them.
However, if you are not comfortable getting naked in the machine, you can still get most of the benefits by wearing your underwear. The red light cannot penetrate clothing, so you want as much exposed skin as possible.
Keep in mind the Planet Fitness Dress Code, and consider that you may need to change before you go in the Beauty Angel. You can change in the locker rooms.
What Do You Do With Your Hair?
If you have long hair, tie it in a bun so that it doesn’t cover your back or any other part of your body.
Plus, it will be more comfortable if your hair is tied while the platform shakes.
What about Eye Protection?
Should you wear goggles, sunglasses, or any other eye protection to use the machine? The short answer is no, you don’t need to. The Total Body Enhancement machines use red light, not damaging UV light.
However, the light is bright! If your eyes are sensitive or if you just feel more comfortable wearing eye protection, you can bring your own glasses or eye protection goggles.
Total Body Enhancement and Tattoos
Sunlight and UV light are not a great mix for tattoos. Exposure could lead to fading or discoloration of the tattoos. This is because the UV rays break down the pigment on the tattoo.
But remember, Total Body Enhancement machines don’t use UV light. So does this mean that it can be safely used by those with tattoos?
Well, not necessarily.
When asked, Planet Fitness says that as per the manufacturer, those who have tattoos can use the machine. However, individual discretion should be used. And they also advise caution for those who have new tattoos.
Studies about the effects of red light therapy or low-level light therapy on tattoos are scarce. There isn’t much study to safely conclude whether there are issues.
A study in PubMed noted that a patient had blisters on his tattoo when he went through LLLT. They concluded that it could be due to the heated iron oxide in the ink of the black tattoo. Although the machines in that study are not Beauty Angels, it reveals possible negative effects.
As for the fading of tattoos, there still isn’t much study or claims regarding red light therapy causing the faded tattoos.
Regardless, if you want to be super safe, you should protect areas of the body with tattoos. If you want to protect your tattoo and still expose as much skin, you can do this by simply placing a cloth or bandage over your tattoo.
How to Stand in Total Body Enhancement
Stand in the middle with your feet shoulder-width apart.
Different Planet Fitness gyms may offer different Total Body Enhancement models, but they are set up in a similar way. Usually, the middle of the platform has feet icons on them. This marks where you should stand.
Look up and you’ll find straps that you can hold on to while you stand. These straps are meant to help provide you support throughout the vibration. They will help you keep your balance through the different vibration programs.
Holding on to these straps also forces you to raise your arms and better expose them to the red light.
Next is to take note of the position of your knees. It is best to have them slightly bent. This position is gentler on the knees and it also helps make sure that the right muscles are targeted throughout the vibration programs.
Slightly bent knees also help with balance.
The vibration programs can target different muscle groups at a time depending on the setting. You don’t need to move around or twist your body — the platform is programmed for you to simply stand on it.
The red light lamps are placed all around you so you don’t have to move or reposition yourself to expose all of your skin to the light.
Stand still with slightly bent knees and hold on to the straps.
Just let the machine work on its own.
The Planet Fitness Total Body Enhancement Beauty Angel is many people’s first introduction to the world of light therapy. But this field is growing pretty quickly, with many new devices designed to beautify, delay aging, and improve health.
Planet Fitness’ Red Light Therapy Device is a great entry into this world. If you’ve got a Black Card membership, it’s absolutely worth checking out.
If you don’t have a Black Card Membership, it’s worth signing up for a month or so to see if you like it!