Rogue RH2 Reverse Hyper
The reverse hyperextension is a useful exercise for powerlifters, athletes, and recreational lifters who want to develop deep gluteal strength that will assist them with squats and with aspects of daily functional fitness. It targets both the glutes and the hamstrings, assisting in micro-tearing the fine muscles of these large groups in ways few other leg exercises can. When they heal on rest days, the microtears assist with building bigger and stronger muscles.
The Rogue RH-2, by Rogue Fitness, follows the classic but somewhat awkward design of these machines and adds a number of safety and comfort features. While the reverse hyperextension will improve your functional fitness, the RH-2 does not qualify as functional fitness equipment in our book. It is designed for a single narrow range of motion and a single result–increased strength and mass in the glutes and hamstrings. We rounded up the features and extras that make the RH-2 special, and we will explain the good, great, and not so great elements of the machine to help you decide if the Rogue hyperextension tool is right for you.
Welded step helps with mounting the machine
Chest pad has a cornered edge, protecting your body from steel
1-inch steel rubber grip covered handles
No assembly needed--unit arrives ready
Protective rubber feet bolt-on for security
Comfort/stability roller attachment costs extra
The difference is that the glutes and hamstrings are much larger than the biceps, and they are needed for just about every athletic endeavor including running, Olympic lifting, team sports, cycling, and distance hiking. If your hamstrings especially are underdeveloped, you will lose stamina more quickly and will not be able to perform or play to your full potential.
The other perk of the reverse hyperextension is its ability to loosen the back muscles, strengthening them and easing back pain, all without the spinal pressure you’d get from a barbell squat or the possible loss of form from a lat pulldown or cable crossover. For this reason, the reverse hyper machine can be seen in many physical therapy and rehab clinics.
If there’s a problem with the reverse hyperextension, it’s that the exercise is very hard to do. It involves lying prone across a raised pad while grasping handles to hold your upper body in place. Your glutes and hips rest on the back of the pad, with your legs hanging down off the edge. Your feet are strapped in to a hinge and fulcrum that holds the weight plate resistance. Moving your legs together backward is what lifts the weight. It is an unnatural position, one that leaves your back vulnerable to injury if your form is off or if you have more resistance than you can handle.
This unit lets you perform back hyperextensions safely and effectively. That is all it does. It’s a lot because the back and leg strength you gain will aid you in so many other physical endeavors. But there isn’t room for any component that doesn’t directly support you in doing this one exercise. From the frame design to the padding, every part of the Rogue RH-2 is there to do a job. There are no extra features, and no upgrades unless you count the optional roller attachment that holds your feet and ankles in place and replaces the base strap.
Coming out of the box, the RH-2 will support you in an unusual position, as no other piece of gym equipment can. It will make sure you are protected from any contact with the steel and will enable you to lift as much as 700 pounds. No extras are needed and, in fact, they would get in the way on such a compact frame. In this machine, design, and function mesh perfectly for a machine that performs beautifully, time after time, rep after rep.
Rogue does not specify a user weight capacity. The unit is designed for both hobbyists and powerlifters, and the frame is the same Ohio-made steel tubing that Rogue uses in their power rack. So we’d place machine user capacity on the high end. It will hold almost any athlete with no problem. Since we aren’t all the same height, the front prone grips are doubled, with two on each side. There is a far grip for taller users and a near grip for shorter users. It is an ingenious way to adjust the machine without any extra pins or accessory parts.
The RH-2 is also available as part of a rack, and there is a bolt-together option that is better for tight spaces. The bolt-together can be maneuvered down stairs and around tight corners, then assembled and left in place for use in the desired room. No matter which iteration of the machine you use, it will be made of the same high-quality materials Rogue always uses, and able to withstand your hardest workouts over a long period of time without breakdown or excess wear.
And One More Thing
Just as we can’t say enough good things about the reverse hyper, we can’t stress enough how dangerous it can be if performed haphazardly or with the wrong equipment. If you are ready to incorporate this exercise, and prepared for a painful period of growing, breaking in, and adapting to the positioning and movement arc, we believe you can’t do much better than the Rogue Fitness RH-2 for performing reverse hyperextensions.
The Final Word
Getting down to the nuts and bolts, the RH-2 is solid and dependable. The padded prone hand grips allow for variations. The 3-inch thick foam and vinyl pad keeps you comfortable and protected. Construction is solid 2 by 3-inch steel tubing. The four-cornered base, with rubber feet for your floor, is 40 inches wide, 52 inches long, and bedrock solid once the unit is in place. The 44-inch height allows most users a full range of motion, and the foot strap is both secure and comfortable. The plate peg is compatible with any 2-inch Olympic plate.
If you are ready to add hyperextensions to your regular regimen, and you are able to make the initial financial investment, the Rogue RH-2 is one of the best solutions you can find in today’s market.