An Upper Body Ergometer, or U.B.E., is a cardiovascular machine. It uses your upper body in a similar motion as you move your legs in an exercise bike. A U.B.E. has handles that rotate in a circular motion. The user grabs these handles and rotates them just like your legs would be riding the pedals of an exercise bike. Some manufacturers even offer adjustable handles as well as handles that have swivel movements – to help reduce wrist strain. U.B.E. units have adjustable seats – forward and backward – and some manufacturers have seats that can be removed entirely. This feature allows for a wheelchair user to position themselves right in front of the rotating handles.
A U.B.E. can be adjusted for resistance during the user’s workout session. Some manufacturers use a magnetic brake while others use a tension brake for resistance. Typically, an Upper Body Ergometer will have a display to show RPMs – revolutions per minute. Some U.B.E. units will have a more complex display and even offer pre-set programs for the user. On these displays, the user can track their workout, count calories, even be placed in an interactive workout where the resistance changes from easy to hard or vice versa. Some U.B.E. units are plug-in format while others are self generating/self powered units.
Upper Body Ergometers are typically used in rehabilitation settings. They can also be seen in athletic facilities, health club settings, or even home gyms. U.B.E. units are a fantastic upper body workout for a wide range of athletic abilities.