clmbr review smart vertical climbing machine
January 14, 2022 6:03 am

Review of CLMBR by a CPT: Effective Cardio & Strength Workout?

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CLMBR rating

Fit Healthy Momma Rating: 9.3/10 ⭐

CLMBR is re-shaping the connected home fitness industry by offering a competitive alternative to traditional cardio machines like treadmills, bikes, and rowers. Sleek and compact in design, this machine is designed for every home and every body.

Move over Peloton, there’s a new machine in town that’s positioned to take over the connected fitness space. CLMBR is a vertical climbing machine that combines the power of a HIIT workout with the benefits of strength training in one easy-to-use, fully interactive machine.

In this article, I’m going to be reviewing the CLMBR from the perspective of a Certified Personal Trainer and real user. I was very excited to get to know this machine on a deeper level as someone who has extensively covered and used fitness bikes, treadmills, and rowing machines over the past couple of years, this felt like a much-needed shakeup in the fitness industry.

The FHM team reviewed CLMBR when it first started making an appearance on the fitness scene back in 2020, but a lot has changed and been refined since then. So, let’s dive in and cover all the bases so you can decide if investing in a CLMBR for your home is a good choice for you!

What Defines an Effective Workout?

effective workouts with clmbr

Before we get into the nitty-gritty of CLMBR, a company that defines their machine as the “Most Effective Cardio & Strength Machine Ever,” I want to first give my definition of what constitutes an effective workout. This could apply to the context of a workout program or to the use of a machine.

From my professional perspective, there are three things that make a workout effective:

You Enjoy The Workout

It’s something that you enjoy doing. If you aren’t somewhat passionate about the exercise you’re performing, you won’t make it a habit and you won’t stick with it. You don’t have to love every second of every workout, but you should derive some kind of enjoyment from it. It has to contain some “fun” factors which come from variety, interactivity, and engagement.

It Challenges You

It challenges your body from both a cardiovascular and strength standpoint. Cardio and strength training are both important parts of your fitness routine. An effective workout will include both. Cardio will help build endurance, increase your oxygen utilization efficiency, and strengthen your heart and respiratory system. Strength training, on the other hand, will help build muscle, increase strength, enhance flexibility and coordination, help protect your ligaments, increase bone density, and help prevent injuries.

It's Scalable

If you perform the same movement day after day using the same weight, time, and the number of repetitions, your body will adapt and you will no longer see results. This is why you must have a program or workout system that allows you to make progress over time, progressive overload is the catalyst for growth and body changes. While the concept of progressive overload mainly applies to strength training, it can also be applied to cardio as well. Adding on my time, more intensity, etc. will help you progress cardiovascularly.

The great news? CLMBR ticks all these boxes! So let’s dive in and see how. 

Quick Summary of CLMBR Review

Product:

Smart Climbing Machine (CLMBR)

Brand:

CLMBR

Founders:

Avrum Elmakis, Chad Hurley (also co-founded YouTube in 2005)

Investors:

Jay-Z, Pitbull

Website:

Best for:

Full-body workout from home with interactive vertical climbing and strength training exercises

Price:

From $2,799

Membership cost:

$39.99 per month (access to workouts in app)

Coupon Code / Discounts:

FHM (use on top of other sales for an additional $100 off)

Avg. User Rating:

New product

FHM Rating:

9.3/10 ⭐ (Excellent)

CLMBR summary review

What Is CLMBR?

vertical smart climbing workout machine - CLMBR

CLMBR is an interactive vertical climbing machine that features a sleek, aesthetically pleasing design and an innovative and engaging user experience. Vertical climbing is a full-body workout that’s both low impact and high intensity. CLMBR takes the user experience up a notch by adding a uniquely interactive climbing experience like no other.

Founded in 2018 in Denver, Colorado with the idea to create the ultimate piece of connected fitness equipment, CLMBR has undergone years of testing and innovation before finally hitting the market for widespread consumer purchase. The result is a piece of connected fitness machinery that’s shaking up the industry and providing folks with new opportunities to find their fitness groove from home.

Pros:

  • Combination of strength and cardio workouts
  • HD screen included for interactive, engaging workouts
  • Variety of classes and programs to keep you feeling excited
  • Classes that range between 15-45 minutes
  • Different class modalities both on and off the machine
  • Engages over 86% of your body’s muscles (full-body workout)
  • Burn up to 670 calories per 30 minutes of training
  • Low-impact for less stress on your joints and reduced risk of injury
  • Small, compact footprint for easy integration into your home
  • Fast delivery

Cons:

  • This style of training might not be right for all populations i.e. elderly folks as it’s high intensity
  • Classes could feel repetitive to some (just like with cycling or rowing)
  • It’s an investment at around $3,000 (however, financing is available to those who qualify)
  • The membership fee is $39.99 per month for content access
  • There are currently no live class options available

The Machine

CLMBR workout machine design

CLMBR is designed for Every Body. It’s built to move with you, maximizing every workout regardless of your fitness level and body type. Nearly anyone can safely and comfortably use CLMBR as part of their fitness routine because it supports the natural posture of the human body.

The machine is also built to be strong and long-lasting, while also being very lightweight and easy to maneuver, should you need to move it around your home. The premium caster wheels allow for effortless gliding when the machine is not in use. Furthermore, the small footprint makes it relatively easy to find an indoor space to accommodate it.

One of the unique selling points and design features of the CLMBR machine is the completely unrestricted view while working out. Plus, this unique design allows users to keep their hands and feet in direct alignment with their hips and shoulders which allows the screen to sit perfectly forward and in the middle of their view.

Thoughtful Design Features

Adjustable Handles

The handles are ergonomic and incrementally adjustable to deliver a custom fit to each user. Handles are adjustable at 1-inch increments and feature three different grip positions; over, under-hand, and neutral.

Textured Foot Pedals

The pedals are textured to keep your feet secure, giving you confidence that you won’t be sliding around or losing your footing while you’re climbing. CLMBR pedals are also oversized so to provide a solid base for any user. Foot straps over the foot for additional support are optional.

Bluetooth Enabled

Connect your fitness tracks and headphones to your CLMBR seamlessly thanks to the Bluetooth connectivity.

Single Wired Connection

Forget about messy wires and complicated setups, CLMBR features just one singular cord system that’s easy to plugin when ready for use and unplug when rolling away.

Resistance Adjustment

Customize your climb by adjusting your resistance with the discrete resistance settings feature.

Caster Wheels

Located on the bottom of the machine are two premium caster wheels to allow you to glide your CLMBR out of the way when you’re not using it.

Display

Large, HD screen with a powerful sound system will allow you to engage in a fully immersive experience.

Quiet Operation

With steel-reinforced belts and high-quality ball bearings, you can count on a smooth and quiet operation when in use (no waking the entire house up with your workouts!).

Machine

Specs

Base dimensional

35” x 32”

Height

88” (fits any ceiling over 8’)

Weight

180 lbs.

Compatibility

Apple & Android

Handles

Quick-adjust with extenders available for those over 6’5”

Pedals

Oversized, textured, optional straps

Step Length

20 in.

Reach Height

20 in.

Max User Weight

350 lbs.

Max User Height

7’

Resistance

Magnetic (11 levels)

Screen Options

10.5” Touch Display or 21.5” Touch Display

The Workout

workout climbing with clmbr

For most people, sticking with a workout routine means finding something that they can do on their schedule in an efficient manner. In my experience, requiring someone to spend an hour a day or more on their fitness routine is a recipe for failure. It needs to be quick, effective, and simple to implement into even the busiest of days. This is where CLMBR shines.

Similar to rowing, climbing has is a full-body workout that engages up to 86% of your body’s muscles at one time. What does this mean? It means that you can get a more efficient workout in less time. Because you’re working your whole body at once, you don’t need to worry about splitting up your workouts to make sure you’re hitting all your major muscle groups (although I still recommend strategic, muscle-specific strength training for those with muscle-building goals).

Another lucrative feature of a climbing workout is that it’s incredibly low-impact, which means that you can safely use your CLMBR without fear of negative consequences on your body and joints. But don’t let the fact that it’s low-impact fool you, this is a high-output workout that will have you working hard and breaking a sweat, you just won’t add additional stress and wear & tear on your joints in doing so.

What is Vertical Climbing?

climbing as a workout with CLMBR

If the idea of climbing is new to you, it’s helpful to understand a little background on what this kind of training is and why it’s beneficial. 

Climbing on a vertical climber is meant to mimic the movement and function of climbing a mountain. This activity combines both cardio and aerobic activities with strength training to deliver an unparalleled full-body workout that’s in alignment with your body’s natural movement.

If you think about it, human beings have been climbing, moving, and exploring since the dawn of time. It’s a natural flow that can easily be translated into a killer workout.

Benefits of CLMBR Workout

Killer Cardio and Strength Combo 

A good fitness routine will combine both cardio and strength training aspects, whether done at the same time or separately. With CLMBR, you can do both at once which means you can achieve a higher output in less time.

Higher V02 Max

Studies have shown that V02 max and heart rate are significantly higher when vertical climbing when compared to other forms of exercise like running or cycling.

Caloric Afterburn

Not only can vertical climbing burn up to 800 calories in just a 30-minute session, but the higher V02 max potential can allow the body to continue burning calories for hours after the workout has been completed.

The App

CLMBR app

A key component of any piece of connected fitness equipment is the app, and that’s definitely the case for CLMBR. It’s one thing to have a sleek and functional machine with the capability to provide a great workout and another thing for the act of working out to be fun, engaging, and available on demand. CLMBR has you covered inside the app.

App Features and Benefits

Large-Scale Viewing

Is there anything worse than having to squint at an app on your phone screen? Of course there is, but it’s so much better when you can experience up close and personal training action on a large format touchscreen like the one that comes with the CLMBR. The sweat-proof, HD touchscreen allows you to feel as though you’re inside a fitness studio right inside your living room.

Incredible Instructors

It takes a special talent to be able to motivate others to push themselves through a workout. It’s the right mix of tough love and encouragement with camaraderie and connection that makes the best fitness experience. With CLMBR you get to come face to face with some of the best in the bix and they’ll keep you locked in for your entire climb.

Seamless Tracking

One of the most satisfying experiences and personal motivators is the ability to look back and see how far you’ve come. No matter where you’re at in your fitness journey, it’s always worthwhile to look back at your progress and use that data to make strides forward. CLMBR allows you to track your progress both on and off the machine with intuitive metrics and personalized workout summaries. 

Tons of On-Demand Classes to Choose From

Whether you’re short on time and need a quick 15-minute workout or you’re there to put in the work and want to crush a 45-minute workout session, CLMBR has the right workout for your needs and abilities on any given day. There are plenty of on-demand class options available and the team is always adding more.

Benchmark Metrics

CLMBR features unique benchmark tracking metrics that allow you to compete with your fiercest competition: yourself! You can set sprint, endurance, and power benchmarks to track over your journey. Using this data, you can make improvements and hone your focus.

Workout Options

CLMBR variety workout options

Don’t be fooled by the simplicity of CLMBR, the app is jam-packed with workouts that will keep you on your toes and keep your body engaged and progressing. Every CLMBR workout isn’t done on the machine, there’s plenty of action on the mat, too. This means that the team understands the importance of a well-rounded fitness program, which, as a personal trainer, makes me giddy. Currently, there are four main workout categories to choose from:

Bootcamp

Dominate the CLMBR and the Floor with Bootcamp workouts that are a total body burner that will have you going from the machine to the floor and back again.

Interval

These machine-based workouts will have you pushing your perceived limits with time-based bursts of work followed by active recovery.

Supplemental strength

Although you will most certainly use and challenge your muscles during your climb, if you have muscle-building goals, these supplemental workouts will take you off the CLMBR and get your working hard towards your functional strength goals.

Rythym

Feel the beat of the music and get lost in the climb! Rhythm workouts are done on the climber and are a great way to get in the zone and feel the ascent

Who is CLMBR a Good Fit For?

CLMBR for home workouts

CLMBR is a worthy fitness investment for anyone who would like to work out from home in an efficient and functional way that allows them to do so on their own schedule. Anyone looking for a workout that’s easy and low-impact on the joints but is still high impact in nature will love the challenge of CLMBR.

Additionally, for any individual who has tried cycling, running, and rowing and is tired of the same routine, a climbing machine like CLMBR will feel like the perfect mix-up and challenge for both your mind and body.

Cost and Where to Buy

pricing and packages CLMBR

CLMBR starts at $2,799 for the Base package and goes to $3,399 for the Summit package. Each package above the Base includes additional equipment and warranties. CLMBR owners will also be responsible for paying the $39.99 per month CLMBR membership to get access to the classes.

CLMBR is available directly through the official website. The image below shows their pricing plans / packages so you can see if before you go there:

costs and pricing table CLMBR

Wrapping Up: Is CLMBR an Effective Workout?

Yes, without a doubt CLMBR is an effective workout. Climbing is such a primal, instinctual movement that’s actually incredibly effective as a whole body workout. Not only does it allow you to move in a natural and non-impactful way, but the nature of the workouts will push you to get your HR up and burn some serious calories in the process.

As a personal trainer, I never recommend that my clients or community do only one type of exercise, however, if they are going to stick to one thing, something that works the whole body at once is the best way to go. But the beautiful thing about CLMBR is that the workouts will take you from climbing on the machine to hitting the floor for some additional training that will add more value and variety to your routine. CLMBR delivers everything you need for an effective workout right from home, especially if you opt to purchase a package that includes additional workout equipment.

Personally, I am wicked excited about CLMBR and can’t wait to start adding in more climbing workouts to my routine. This feels like a giant breath of fresh air in an overcrowded and over-hyped fitness market.

effective workout vertical climbing CLMBR

Verified Review

CLMBR verified vertical climbing

Additional $100 Off: FHM

CLMBR Tips from a CPT

  • Start from where you’re at and work your way up! I see far too many people dive into a new fitness routine with too much vigor and end up burning out. Start small and work your way up, you’ll be surprised how quickly you will adapt and grow.
  • Make sure you have a good pair of workout shoes that have good treads for safety while using the machine.
  • Don’t chase calorie burn alone, utilize the benchmark metrics and set some goals for yourself! Work on getting stronger and faster and not just how many calories you can burn.
  • Make sure you’re also working in some other workouts on top of climbing. Grab some weights and do some strength training or hit the mat for some yoga. Give your body what it needs. And if it needs a break, take it. 
  • Have fun with it! Connected fitness was designed to give you that active and engaging workout that so many are missing out on now that plenty of us are working out from home. Enjoy the workouts, feel the camaraderie, and join the community.

About the author 

Tami Smith

A fitness enthusiast, Tami Smith is an ACE certified fitness trainer, specializing in pre and post-natal fitness. She studied business and earned her bachelor's degree in Business Economics. Tami is a mom of two and women's health advocate. Her passion is to help people live a fit, healthy life!

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