So Holmes asked his dry cleaner to do him a favor: sew a resistance band into the back of a compression shirt and let the ends dangle by his hands. As soon as she delivered it, he slipped his palms into the handles and shadowboxed his way through a jog.
“My muscles were burning,” raves Holmes, who exercised with this prototype for three years, shortening the band and adding padding for comfort. The result is the RS-1 ($100), the first product from Holmes’ apparel company, Ripflexxx. It debuted at last month’s NBC4 Health & Fitness Expo, where Holmes demonstrated how he could jab, hook and uppercut, all with the benefit of 35 pounds of resistance.
Holmes’ sales pitch? The RS-1 is as useful for boxers as it is for mall walkers, or anyone who wants to up the calorie burn of a workout. “Anything with resistance will make you perspire faster,” Holmes says. Good thing the shirt’s machine washable. -Vicky Hallett
Just getting into the RS-1 was a workout — the tug of the resistance bands forced me to slip into it in one motion, which sounds easy until you try it.
When I wasn’t gripping the handles, they hung close to my elbows, so they weren’t in the way. As soon as I grabbed them, I felt the weight.
My upper arms were exhausted after trying to keep up with Holmes for a bout of treadmill shadowboxing. They got even more of a workout when we hopped off and incorporated the bands into twisting core exercises and pushups.
The shirt turned out to be pretty versatile, and I can truthfully say I didn’t want to take it off. Mostly because I was already sore. -Michael Cunniff