Two weeks ago, Obstacle Racing Media published a podcast interview with Dr. Jason Wagner. We reached out to Jason as a direct result of his blog post questioning the legitimacy and effectiveness of the “Elevation Training Mask”. I personally reached out to TrainingMask.com shortly after this episode aired to see if they wanted to respond to any of Jason’s findings.
I got in touch with the CEO of Training Mask LLC, Casey Danford, and he suggested we speak with Brian MacKenzie. Brian is a world renowned strength and conditioning coach and has studied altitude and hypoxic training for over 10 years. Brian works for Training Mask, LLC as an independent contractor and wears the loose title of “Research & Development in Human Performance”.
I chose to have Joshua Grant on the call with me to ask some tough questions. Josh is a well respected athlete and has become ORM’s resident skeptic/myth buster. Many in the OCR community may remember his appearance with the inventor of Oral IV on a previous podcast episode.
The interview with Brian and Joshua took place as planned and we will publish it in it’s entirety this Friday.
Several questions came up during the call regarding the true benefits/claims of the mask. The largest bone of contention being that the mask has nothing to do with actual “elevation training”. Statements had been made previously by some associated with Training Mask, LLC that many were aware these benefits did not exist, but that it didn’t mean the Training Mask wasn’t a quality product, didn’t have other benefits, etc.
Joshua Grant pointed out that the words “elevation mask” (along with the logo appearance of mountains still appearing on the mask and its packaging) was misleading consumers.
When this point was raised, Brian answered the best he could, then referred us back to Casey Danford, the CEO of Training Mask, for further discussion.
This afternoon we received breaking news in the form of an email from Mr. Danford.
As CEO of TrainingMask, I am taking on the full responsibility to make our claims correct and make them solid with clinical backings. Currently we are undergoing a huge clinical study from the University of North Texas. With everything brand new and untested there are known knowns, and known unknowns and then there are assumptions.
We are in the process of changing the verbiage from Elevation Training Mask to “Resistance Training Mask” this has been happening over the last 4 months but with anything it takes time.
We are also in the process of changing the logo (Brand identification) this is probably the easiest but toughest part. The logo of a mountain is very generic and we have made a choice just recently to update our logo as #1 the mountain logos do not define our future market, # 2 the brand needs to be “defined” by the logo not by the verbiage “Training Mask”.
Repackaging has all been changed over, this happened 6 months ago and new product going out has correct information on the boxes and in the manuals, however as you know change over takes a bit more time with these types of things. However we are actively and aggressively moving all Marketing materials to a Resistance Breathing Device.
As far as statements on the website we are working with our web team to comb through these and remove anything pertaining to Elevation or Altitude.
Brian has brought it to our attention that our writer has made a few errors on the website such as the Vo2 Max and a few other things. I will say these were not Brian’s findings, these were findings that were to be pulled out of the clinical from American Council on Exercise (Which we feel is an Ok study) by our writer. We know more research needs to be and is being done.
Brian is a valuable player in moving TrainingMask into the future and the movement “Learn to breathe correctly” position we have moved to. Brian did get on the podcast however he’s not an MD or PHD, he’s an innovator, and has the best interest of the athlete first. We will continue to work with Brian to lead the forefront of bringing TrainingMask athletes for testing and researching the how and why and what the benefits of TrainingMask are. We are fixing anything that may have been misconstrued within documentations and within the website its self.
We are currently bringing on advisors and to help guide the information become education to not only the end user but within the TrainingMask walls as well.
Changes in nut shell for TrainingMask are coming and we look forward to jumping on another podcast after these changes have been made and showing impressive results from the UNT study.
*Note – Photo used for this article was created by Obstacle Racing Media and is not official Training Mask LLC content.