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I Bought a ThighMaster (and My Knees Are Thrilled)

Stills from a 1991 ThighMaster commercial.

Driven to workout at home while gyms are closed, I was searching for some fun products to help me focus on my trouble areas. One of the products I bought was a knock-off ThighMaster, and I love it.

What Is the ThighMaster?

If you weren’t old enough to watch commercials and infomercials in the 90s, there’s a good chance you might have never even heard of the ThighMaster. It’s an exercise device that was widely advertised during that decade in informational commercials starring Suzanne Somers (an actress best known for her roles on the sitcoms Three’s Company and Step by Step).

The concept behind the ThighMaster was to have a workout device that would offer spot reduction when you use it—meaning it would focus only on one area and ignore the other parts of the body around it. Of course, spot reduction is a myth.

As for the device itself, it’s pretty simple. It’s two metal loops, covered in padding, hinged together with a sturdy spring. While there are a million-and-one knocks offs, you can still buy the original if you want the real-deal brand-name ThighMaster. The natural position of the device is open, and you use your legs to press the loops together. It’s pretty much a very portable version of the much bigger inner-thigh machines you might have seen at a gym.

My ThighMaster and Me

While I did initially purchase an imitation ThighMaster for the purpose of thinning my thighs, I found out that it had many more benefits for me about a week into using it. No two people are the same, so what works for me might not work for you. It’s important to talk to your doctor about new exercise routines, depending on your general health.

But here’s what I noticed one week into using my ThighMaster:

  • My knees stopped hurting as much: I have arthritis in my knees (the crunchy kind), and I found I was able to walk twice the distance as usual without pain.
  • My hip pain decreased: Normally, on walks, I would start having hip pain within the first mile, but after a week with the ThighMaster, I was able to walk more than two miles before minor hip pain even started.

When it comes to specific research about the ThighMaster itself helping with knee and hip pain, there’s not a whole lot of information on the device itself. There is, however, lots of information about how good working the inner thighs is for your knees, hips, and general stability. While I’m not physiotherapist, it seems like a good bet that strengthening the muscles on my inner thighs helped balance out my leg muscles and stabilized my knees and hips in the process.

But hey, fixing knee and hip pain sounds great, but let’s talk about the truly best thing about the ThighMaster: it’s ridiculously easy to use, and you can use it while you do other things. Plus, you can use it for exercising other parts of your body as well. I sit on the edge of the couch and work my legs out using mine while watching movies, binge-watching my favorite TV shows, and even while I write stuff—like this article.

Yvonne Glasgow Yvonne Glasgow
Yvonne Glasgow is a professional writer with two decades of experience. She has written and edited for nutritionists, start-ups, dating companies, SEO firms, newspapers, board game companies, and more. Yvonne is a published poet and short story writer, and she is a life coach. Read Full Bio »
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