Asceti strength system information page

Asceti prototype


This was designed with the goal of being the simplest possible exercise device, which can fold to fit in a backpack, and yet be able to train all major bodyparts as intensely as gym barbells and machines, but can do so anywhere. You can take it hiking and work out there. The weight used is your OWN bodyweight. The beams form geometries that send amplified or reduced portions of your bodyweight to the corresponding muscle group during exercise.

Asceti exercise equivalence


ASCETI™ is a strength product design accompanied with a unique style of training, which will feel different and refreshing while still rooted in well established weightlifting and strength training fundamentals.

The novelty of the underlying concept is that :

  1. it replaces the external weight/plates with portions (or multiples) of the athlete's own bodyweight; by using rigid beams to transmit a ground reaction force to the working muscles,
  2. it can perform the dynamics / kinematics of the most common weightlifting exercises.
  3. the elimination of external weights enables a simplification of structural design yielding a minimalist, travel-size, training tool.

In practice, the use of the device falls on the upper end of intensity / rigor scale; similar to a medium or heavy work day in the gym for an seasoned weightlifter.

PROMOTES : Strength to weight ratio.
When this device was patented in 2000 (and was conceived in the mid 90s) the CrossFit movement was not even around. The strength to weight ratio concept (strength density) was largely neglected or unknown by most fitness enthusiasts; except for Olympic gymnasts and serious athletes.
The ASCETI™ uses your own bodyweight, which means every gram of muscle (or fat) gained today will come against us tomorrow; creating a self-feedback loop, forcing our body to automaticly adapt its strength to weight ratio as we train.

PROMOTES : Muscle coordination and physical intuition.
The ASCETI™ is a free-style training system (not constrained in predetermined paths of movement). Just like free weights, a free-style system helps develop physical intuition by forcing the individual to mentally focus in order to isolate the movement and maintain proper form during training. This entails consciously making micro-adjustments, aiming the weight to the proper motion ...


Is it possible to train seriously, or semi-seriously without free weights, barbells, and machines at a gym ? The answer is yes !
We all carry our own body around, which itself is a weight. The Asceti beams can channel fractions or multiples of your own bodyweight to a muscle group; depending on how steap the beams are during the exercise. So, let's get slightly technical by following the illustrations bellow :


In FIG.1: Imagine a beam having a hinged end that pivots about a fixed point with a 90lb weight pulling down. The beam is connected to the wall by a rope (shown as a red horizontal line). In this case, with the beam at 60 degrees, the rope needs to pull by 52lb to balance the 90lb weight. [ 90 / T = tan60 ➞ T = 90 / tan60 ➞ T = 52 lb ]

In FIG.2: The beam is lowered to a 30 degree. In this case the rope needs to pull by 156lb to balance the 90lb weight. Merely by changing the geometry we are changing drastically the forces within the system, without changing the hanging weight ! [ 90 / T = tan30 ➞ T = 90 / tan30 ➞ T = 156 lb ]

In FIG.3: Instead of a wall, we have a second structure mirroring the first and pulling the oposite direction.

In FIG.4: Taking this one step further to its natural conclusion, we can imagine that the rope of Fig.3 is replaced by the pectoral muscles of the operator and the hanging 90lb weights of Fig.3 are the percentage of the operator's bodyweight pushing down on the beams. Since the muscles of the user are now replacing the rope of the earlier examples, it is those muscles that experience increasing forces in order to hold the Asceti beams in place at steep angles. The closer to the ground we get, the force needed simply goes to infinity! Even if you can bench-press 700lb at the gym you can still train with the Asceti !


Perform exercises equivalent to:

  • Preacher curls
  • Barbell curls
  • Wrist curls
  • Cable tricep pressdowns
  • Lying tricep extensions
  • Upright rows
  • Lat pulldowns
  • Rows
  • Standing lateral cable flyes
  • Standing cable pulldowns
  • Dumbbell flyes
  • Arnold press
  • Leg curls
  • Leg Extensions

Isolate muscle groups:

  • Deltoids
  • Levators
  • Pectorals
  • Serratus
  • Biceps
  • Triceps
  • Flexor Carpi
  • Latissimus
  • Teres
  • Trapezius
  • Rhomboids
  • Leg Quadriceps
  • Leg Biceps

Overall Weight of device:

  • Minimal (less then 10Lb depending on material)


  • Intended for travel size, handheld convenience

Expected level of experience:

  • medium to advanced.
  • Power lifting intensity.

Notable exercise benefits:

  • Muscle building
  • Strength building
  • Power to weight ratio
  • Motor/Muscle coordination


  • Reduces to fit in a 25” long sports-bag

Resistance Type:

  • Weightlifting / Gravity

Resistance Medium/Magnitude

  • Operator’s own bodyweight(and multiples or fractions of it)

BICEPS (variation 1)
BICEPS (variation 2)
TRICEPS (variation 1)
TRICEPS (variation 2)
IronCross dips AIronCross dips B
Pull ups APull ups B
Wide grip rows AWide grip rows B
Rear delts ARear delts B
Pectorals APectorals B
Forearms AForearms B
Leg extensions ALeg extensions B
Leg curls ALeg curls B
DESIGNER / Inventor : Thomas An
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