11 Jun

NSD Power Spinner Gyrosopic Exerciser Review

The hand and wrist exerciser market should certainly be considered “niche”, and trying to break it into sub-categories is an exercise in futility. In turn, that makes reviewing it difficult because if you’re already considering a gyroscopic hand exerciser this may not be particularly informative. Really, then, this is more of an educational walk-through of a product you’ve maybe never heard of, with enough background information to hopefully pique your interest.

Gyroscopic wrist exercisers have been around for a long time. I know I first picked one up in high school nearly 15 years ago, and they were around long before that as well. But most people probably have no actual use for the product, or, because it’s such a small market, didn’t know such a product existed to begin with. So stay with me here, because it’s actually a pretty cool device.

Basically a “spinner” is a little plastic ball (about the size of a baseball) that contains a weighted rotor inside. With a little finessing, you can get the internal rotor spinning on two axes using the motion of your wrist and arm, build RPMs, and eventually produce quite a lot of force that will help build grip, wrist, and arm strength. It’s also just fun to play with. They come in quite a variety ranging from your very basic no-frills models to models that light up (brighter lights the faster you spin), models with digital counters (keeps track of speed and rotation), and models made of metal (heavier or faster), as well as combinations and a few other variations. The prices range anywhere from about $20 all the way up to $120 or so for the most expensive metal version.

There are two primary companies that produce them. The first one is NSD, which is a Taiwan-based company that builds the units which are then sold by various distributors throughout the world under a few different names (like NSD Spinner, NSD Power, NSD Powerball, etc.). Essentially, any of the products that have “NSD” somewhere in the name are the same thing. The other company, Dynaflex, has done a little better job making a name for themselves — especially in the US where you can sometimes find their products in brick-and-mortar sporting goods stores (sometimes under “DFX” branding).

I’ve steered clear of Dynaflex due to some possibly sketchy promotional tactics as well as questionable service, lower product quality, and the fact that they sell “therapeutic magnetic bracelets” for $35 on their website. [see update at bottom]

The NSD distributors, on the other hand, seem to provide overall much better service and stand behind their products. I ended up ordering mine from Amazon, which is from the primary US distributor of NSD products, NSDPowerUS.com. Note that they sell products labeled “NSD Power Spinner” as well as “NSD Spinner”. You can also order similar products, called “NSD Powerball” from a more well-known European distributor, with free shipping, at www.powerballs.com. It gets even more convoluted because in the US, “Powerball” is used for some of Dynaflex’s products while outside of the US, “Powerball” is the name for the NSD product. Confused yet? I know, I was as well. Apparently there is quite a competitive landscape not only between companies, but also between distributors of the same product! The bottom line is that I went with the NSD version (NSD Power “Winners” model for around $33) because I believe that while all gyroscopic spinners are fairly close in quality, NSD products have lifetime warranties and less sketchy companies standing behind those warranties.

So how do I use this thing? Well, most commonly I’m doing speed runs, which means I’m trying to get the rotor spinning as fast as possible. This is a great way to break up a day in front of a computer screen (and using a mouse and keyboard!). Lately I’ve also been enjoying the 30 second interval mode (there’re also 60 and 90 second modes on the digital counter) where the goal is to get the highest total number of  rotations within 30 seconds. Sounds easy, right? WRONG! Trying to keep this thing spinning at max speed for 30 seconds will put a hurtin’ on your arm — in a good way. You can also use the resistance this provides to do a mini arm workout, for example slowly doing a curling motion with your arm while maintaining RPMs with the spinner. Check this out for some examples.

One of the cool things about buying it from the US distributor is that the company hosts a contest on their Facebook page to see who can spin the fastest. Luckily the number of contestants has been relative low; it allowed me to win the contest on numerous occasions and bring home nearly $200 in Amazon gift certificates. Best investment of all time? Possibly!

So if you’ve never heard of a spinner and are curious to try one, go with the NSD! And if you’re already interested in purchasing a spinner but weren’t sure which brand to get, STILL get an NSD! It’s a fun little device and one that’s actually healthy to play with.

Update 1/30/13: I posted a link to this review on the NSD Spinner Facebook page and received a response from someone at DynaFlex (see comment below for the first part of the exchange). After a long back-and-forth discussion and many insulting and completely incoherent points from his side, I can now confidently say: ABSOLUTELY AVOID DYNAFLEX/DFX AT ALL COSTS. It appears to be a terrible, terrible company not interested in their image or their relationship with new/existing customers. Their only interest in this case was defending their magnetic bracelets’ health benefits, putting down their competitors, and discrediting this review, rather than trying to prove they actually care about their customers and they’re not a completely shady business.

If you found my review helpful and wish to purchase one of these spinners from Amazon, click here to check out what they’re offering. I get a small percentage from each sale I refer. And yes, I really do love Amazon. I do as much of my online shopping as possible from there. You can also pick them up directly from NSDPowerUS.com or Powerballs.com at slightly higher prices (and the latter is based in Europe).

10 thoughts on “NSD Power Spinner Gyrosopic Exerciser Review

  1. I realize that you’re quite biased in your gryoscopic review. You claim that you had that dynaflex gyro from 15 years ago, IF you were truly comparing both gyros, why did you not contact DFX Sports & fitness (dynaflex) for their up-to-date product and not use something that is 15 years old? By the way, it is still working after 15 years, that alone says thats some good quality.

    It’s pretty unfair that did not check out our new product which has the speed meters and the quality as well as other gadgets that surpass NSD. I would at least hope you would let us talk for ourselves since you cannot see your errors.

    The Magnetic Bracelets called Magnalinx are actually a neat product. If you ever wondered why equestrians vets put magnetic blankets on their patients, its much like the magnetic bracelets. The magnets increase blood circulation and it has been used in ancient times of the Egyptians as well to heal many different ailments.

    As far as the service goes for DFX, we pride ourselves in being the best there is. I doubt that you have ever gave us a call in the recent 10 years. The truth is for NSD, if you want to talk to foreigners for support, much like technical support for computers, you might have a bad time. Thats a big part of them not being an “American” company.

    So why not support American companies? http://www.mydfx.com
    Check out the Dynamax Core-Trainer.

  2. @Logan: I replied to this same comment on the NSD Facebook page, but I’ll paste my response here as well:

    Here’s some crazy news for you: my review isn’t “biased” just because I prefer to give NSD my business over DFX. I chose NSD based on my own research.

    It’s crazy how you’re defending the quality of your products and dismissing my research when I never said DFX makes a bad gyro product (although the reviews on the $200 “pro trainer” are less than stellar). My complaints were around shady company practices and no offense, but whether it’s your company or ANY other company trying to sell overpriced magnets as “healing”, it’s just not something I can get behind. On your OWN PAGE, you say “Don’t forget the simplest of facts; even if it only brings a smile to your face, then it’s still good for you!” Sounds like maybe there aren’t a lot of studies to back up the “healing” claim, right? To each their own. Additionally, coming to your competitor’s page and putting down their customers for sharing their own opinions isn’t going to win you any more customers — it only illustrates my point further.

    As I actually HAVE contacted NSD (both NSDPowerUS as well as their European competitors), I can assure you that their support is top-notch and I have no doubt that they stand behind their products. Again, DFX may make a decent product, but I’d choose the NSD again and recommend it to everyone else as well.

    I’m glad you took the opportunity to watch my review and hopefully take some of this as constructive criticism on how your company may be viewed by potential new customers — or former customers.

    Addendum: if you want another example of shady business practice, check out the “DynaMax Pro Trainer” on Amazon and then look at the few 5-star reviews. 4 out of 5 of them are from people who have ONLY reviewed DynaFlex products on their account and nothing else, and for the 5th one, the guy has reviewed 5 DynaFlex products so he either really loves DFX (fair enough) or his DFX reviews are fake as well.

  3. I’ve read the review for the powerball with interest and couldn’t help but be drawn to comment on the idea of magnetic healing. I’m afraid that magnetic healing relies on a placebo effect rather than any definite physical effects. The spurious ‘science’ that does exist suggests that the magnets increase blood flow, and therefore healing, by attracting ferrous elements in the blood. Unfortunately, this is just not true as the magnets used are just not strong enough. To counter the idea that Egyptians using magnets is proof of efficacy I would point out that people used to think the earth was flat. My point being that just because something has been done for a long time, it doesn’t mean it has value. On a different note, I bought an NSD powerball and its brilliant.

  4. @Dave — Awesome! I couldn’t agree more. Which Powerball did you end up with, and did you go for it as a result of seeing this review?

  5. I ended up getting the 250hz pro. I wanted the counter ability to set myself a bit of a challenge. I should be able to use it in the office to pass some time in a useful way. Like I said, its a cool piece of kit.

  6. Although the magnets don’t seem to do much, I kind of have to side with Logan when he is saying you are being pretty biased in your review. And why are you all over NSD spinner’s page? it really does seem like your just working for them. seems unfair to me.

  7. I’m not sure you guys understand bias. If I like a product better based on the product itself or the company that stands behind it, that’s not bias. That’s preference. Since I had never heard of NSD before purchasing their product and decided for myself that I like it better, there is no bias. I am sorry that everyone on the DFX side seems to be so upset by the fact I prefer their competitor’s company to theirs. However, you don’t see me going over to the Dynaflex page and talking trash or posting fake reviews for DFX products I don’t own on their Amazon pages.

    I’m all over the NSD page for a number of reasons. First, I really enjoy the product and their page as well as the European Powerball page have been a great place to interact with other spinning fans. Second, the positive experiences I’ve had with NSD has made me a believer in their company, even though I have absolutely no affiliation with them whatsoever. Just like you are here defending DFX, I’m standing behind NSD.

    The crazy part is that I could very well have ended up reviewing a brand new DFX product and never even learned about NSD if DFX wasn’t engaging in the fake review thing. It’s not that hard to spot a fake, and when I did, I immediately began researching alternatives. Then, when I posted my review on NSD’s page (again, I didn’t go out of my way to post it on Dynaflex’s properties), someone from DFX came and trash talked me and my review instead of trying to show that they weren’t a shady company as I’d thought. It’s funny how everyone from the DFX camp seems to attack my credibility (as well as some personal attacks), instead of trying to fix their company image (like, I donno, removing all of your fake reviews). And if they’d handled the situation differently, I’d have updated my original review to reflect that. Instead they just dug themselves a bigger “shady hole”, as far as I’m concerned.

    Update: Just noticed that “Logan” and “Jordan” were both posting from the same IP address. More shadiness from DFX.

  8. You picked a winner without trying new products from both companies. How is that not biased? Your reason is that DFX sells a product that you haven’t tried and don’t believe in – That’s probably biased as well. You bought a new product because you apparently liked your 15 year old product from DFX. That speaks well of that company’s product. You seem like a nice guy – Why don’t you just say that you bought an NSD product and that you like it. You don’t need to say all the negative stuff about DFX.

  9. Paul,

    If I research 2 products, then purchase one based on my research, I don’t think that makes me biased. As I said, I specifically avoided buying another DFX, despite the fact that my previous one lasted 15 years, based on CURRENT RESEARCH. If anything, I would have been biased towards DFX, since I already owned one and considered buying one of those before I ever learned about NSD. Switching to a new product that looked better than what I had previously is NOT biased.

    Additionally, my original review simply stated facts about my experience between the two major companies that supply gyros in the U.S. As a consumer trying to provide the best recommendation to potential new buyers, I shared my experience and concerns about one of those brands. The way DFX found my review on their competitor’s page (I did not try and go to DFX pages and bash them) and attacked me personally after I posted it only proved my point further.

    Moving forward, I guess you could say I have a “bias” towards NSD simply because I WILL NOT BUY OR RECOMMEND A DFX PRODUCT TO ANYONE, EVEN IF THE PRODUCT IS SUPERIOR. Why? I will NEVER stand behind a company who treats consumers the way they treated me. If they have a better product, I have no problem saying that objectively; but in this case, even a superior product would not change my opinion about their company.

    I will continue to write my reviews using whatever knowledge/research/opinion I think will be most helpful to someone reading. Someone who prefers a DFX model is welcome to do the same on their own site. If you’d prefer to pick up a DFX, by all means go ahead. But I wouldn’t recommend it.



  10. Nice review and clearly explained,thanks. I have just bought my NSD Powerball and already feel the difference in wrist and arm muscle tone.

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