Imagine pants that help build muscle strength and endurance simply by wearing them.
St. Louis resident Aaron Mottern did imagine it, then made it a reality. A marketing and software development professional with strong entrepreneurial instincts, Mottern was working with some NFL athletes in 2016 when he saw the need for adding resistance during training.
“Guys were struggling to put resistance on their body outside of the gym,” Mottern said. “I thought about it and came up with the idea of putting resistance bands in pants. Nine months later, we had a product on the market.”
Agogie pants wear like normal athleisure apparel but perform like equipment. Eight rubber bands stitched into the pants create an exoskeleton of resistance over your natural muscle and ligament lines. This resistance challenges your muscles to work harder and engages more of them as you move.
“Once you put the pants on, so long as you have the right size, it’s impossible not to benefit just by wearing them,” said Mottern.
Local triathlon coach Sally Drake and some of her clients tried the pants during a track workout.
“There were a lot of ‘wows’,” said Drake. “The main thing we noticed is that the pants activated your knee drive, which is huge for Ironman athletes running for endurance. We work a lot on knee drive and form, and these pants, in my mind, contribute to the strengthening of the muscles needed and doing it during the run itself. You can do strength training separately, but if you can do it at the same time, there’s efficiency and applicability there.”
Drake says she also wore the pants on a bike ride and experienced a similar effect.
“The thing I liked about them was the resistance in the upstroke,” she said. “The downstroke is natural and easy, but the pants really would fatigue you in that pedal upstroke, so you’re getting the strength and muscle you need right where you need it.”
Competitive athletes aside, Mottern says Agogie’s top buyer is “anyone who wants to be healthier, who wants to get in a workout when doing normal tasks.” That could be hiking, walking the dog, or even mowing the yard.
“From a hiking perspective, you’re already doing elevation work, so the pants add a layer of difficulty with the movement of the legs,” he said. “You’re increasing the benefits of hiking by increasing your muscle activity simply by putting the pants on while you hike. You’ll notice the resistance in the calves, hip flexors, and quads.”
Agogie pants are available in men’s and women’s fits in two resistance levels: +20 and +40. The former are great for all day wear or long distance runs and walks while the latter is recommended for shorter duration exercise or short running or walking routines. The pants sell for $130 direct through the company’s website at agogie.com.
Author: Brad Kovach is the editor/publisher of Terrain Magazine.