how safe is EMS Fitness

How Safe is EMS fitness?

As trainers in the fitness industry, a common internal question we ask ourselves is “what is the risk/reward ratio?” 

The benefits of any chosen exercise, training modality or equipment should always outweigh any risks. 

Electro muscle stimulation solves a lot of issues around exercising consistently. The main objections to a regular exercise routine are not having enough time, not knowing what to do, lacking motivation, being injured, and dealing with aches and pains. 

An EMS workout is short, only 20 minutes, and every session is done with a trainer that will keep you accountable and motivated while modifying exercises to fit your fitness level. In addition, the stimulation typically relieves many aches and pains, and, if not, we can put you through our unique Pain Relief program. 

Ok, but how safe is it to have an electrical current running through muscles? 

It is actually very safe.

  • We only use FDA-cleared equipment. 
  • We use relatively low frequencies (5 to 100 Hz) and varying degrees of pulse width (100 – 400 microseconds). These frequencies and depths of stimulation are not high enough to affect organs beyond the skin and the muscles underneath.
  • The stimulation runs from side to side of the SuperSuit, meaning the circuit connecting the chest electrodes, for example, runs from the left pectoral to the right pectoral, instead of through the body.
  • All of our trainers are certified to conduct personal training sessions, are further certified by our equipment manufacturer, and also go through our internal training protocols

EMS fitness, however, is not recommended for everybody. If you are interested in exercising with electrical muscle stimulation but present one of the following conditions, you are, unfortunately, not allowed to do so: 

People with pacemakers, insulin pumps, and other medical devices with electrical components: Any electrical interference may cause a malfunction of these devices.

Pregnant people: No research is available on this population, so we don’t know what the risks (or benefits) are while pregnant. If you are pregnant, however, it is recommended to continue exercising unless your doctor said otherwise.

Cancer: Although there is research showing that exercise with electrical muscle stimulation can be beneficial while battling cancer, the FDA won’t allow the use of EMS fitness with cancer patients. If cancer has been in remission for a while then EMS fitness can be an option.

Severe kidney disease: EMS fitness is considered a high-intensity exercise modality, and has similar physiological effects as other high-intensity exercises (Marathons, CrossFit, etc.) and therefore must be avoided with any severe kidney disease.

Epilepsy/Seizures: EMS fitness, like other forms of exercise, could trigger an episode, so it is not recommended to use if you’re susceptible to seizures.

EMS Fitness is a joint-friendly, low-impact exercise modality that can be as intense as you want it. There are a set of relative contraindications that would require you to get a doctor’s note in order to participate in our programs just as you would need it for other intense forms of exercise.

Overall, EMS fitness remains one of the safest and most effective ways to improve strength and other health markers while also circumventing many issues that people face when trying to exercise regularly. In other words, the benefits of EMS fitness outweigh the risks as long as you don’t present any of the absolute contraindications, and to a certain extent, relative contraindications. 

As published recently in Frontiers in Physiology: 

“Summing up the present Research Topic, WB-EMS predominantly applied as resistance type exercise with moderate-high intensity, intermittent impulse, short duration, and low training frequency can be considered a feasible and efficient training technology for addressing important health-related outcomes widely independently of the functional status of the participant/patient.”

Book a 30-minute call with me here to see if EMS would be right for you:


Director of Education and Technology

About Bodybuzz

Bodybuzz combines Certified Personal Training with Electrical Muscle Stimulation, giving your body a deeper, safer, and more effective workout. 20 minutes twice a week is all it takes!

Our personal trainers will guide you through a custom EMS workout designed specifically for you. Whether you’re looking to build strength, lose weight, get toned, or recover from an injury or illness, we offer a safe, low-impact solution to help get you there.

EMS has now been FDA-cleared for use in the US and we are proud to be one of the first companies to introduce this technology. It is a full-body workout that uses a special muscle stimulating suit that sends low-level impulses to your major muscle groups to trigger muscle contractions. It’s a unique sensation that is painless and invigorating. EMS workouts are designed to achieve optimal conditioning, burn fat, develop strength, build muscle, tighten skin, combat cellulite, jump-start your metabolism and restore your body’s natural balance.