Are you the type of fitness enthusiast who needs a coach, friend or just anyone or anything to motivate you to go the gym? If so, you might find that the environment and structure of a fitness class is exactly what your training regimen has been missing. Whether you sign up for a bunch or just try it once, a fitness class is a great way to add variety to your strength and conditioning routine. Check out these nine trendy and effective fitness classes in 2015 to see what the hype is all about.
First, you put on a heart rate monitor. Then, you go to either a rowing machine, treadmill or weight floor. Each 60-minute class will contain a circuit of all three of these elements and your heart rate and calories burned will be displayed on a large screen along with the other class members’ data.
The data is presented as a bar graph with x-axis representing the heart rate zone (warmup to fat burning) and the y-axis representing time spent within that heart rate zone. The goal is 12-20 minutes in zones 4 (orange zone) and 5 (red zone) in order to facilitate the excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC) effect and burn maximum fat post-workout. Although this class displays everyone’s data, you’re really competing against yourself, trying to spend more and more time in the orange heart rate zone.
I burned 774 calories in one class and I only spent four minutes in the orange. I likely would’ve burned 1,000 calories if I had pushed myself into the orange zone for a few more minutes.
Unnata Yoga is a type of yoga founded by certified yoga instructor and aerial performer Michelle Dortignac. Combining aerial elements and traditional yoga, Unnata offers what many stretching routines cannot: a complete joint-cracking (in a good way), hips-opening, range-of-motion-extending experience.
Using a fabric hammock that’s securely anchored from the ceiling, you’ll follow the Unnata instructor’s lead to ease your mind and body like never before.
With workouts that mainly use car tires, pullup bars, and heavy bags, Amenzone is a back-to-basics, primal fitness class designed to get you strong and lean. Cleaned, recycled tires serve as the main stimulus throughout the group and individual training sessions available at Amenzone's West Coast locations.
UFC Fit is a full-body workout class (offered at your local UFC Gym) that's designed to burn fat, build lean muscle, and make you a better fighter. I took UFC Fit at UFC Gym SoHo in New York City and my class consisted of multiple rounds of plyometrics moves, striking work with punching bags, and bodyweight exercises performed in the Octagon.
A growing fitness trend, working out in a studio dedicated to one activity is catching on with athletes of all levels. One such boutique studio in New York is Mile High Run Club, a building with two training rooms: one filled with treadmills for running and another outfitted for weight training. In the “Distance” class, I was running on a treadmill for more than 50 minutes, mostly in intervals, which added up to nearly six miles.
What stood out about this class was the blend of a competitive atmosphere with nightclub-like lighting and music for a workout that’s fun and as hard as you make it.
Offered exclusively at Crunch Gym locations in New York, Los Angeles, Miami, and San Francisco, Transformer with DISQ is a group fitness classes that utilizes a mobile piece of resistance fitness equipment called DISQ. Step into ankle straps that connect to a belt via adjustable resistance cords. These cords end at a handle, which you hold in your hand, much like a resistance band, except to add resistance you just turn a notch on the belt rather than switch bands.
In the Transformer with DISQ class, you’re sure to get a full body joint-friendly workout with a training tool that adds resistance to any functional exercise.
Flywheel Sports is an indoor cycling class that puts a new spin on competitive fitness. First, your bike displays RPMS, “torq” (resistance), speed and power output. If you opt in to the Torqboard, this data is displayed on a leaderboard during the class and online after the class. The data is cumulative so you can compete against yourself and others over time.
If you’re the type who can’t do cardio without constantly looking at the numbers and trying to increase them, Flywheel Sports (available in 11 states) is for you.
Between CrossFit, boutiques, and commercial gyms, it seems like rowing machines are virtually unavoidable these days. They provide both a cardiovascular and muscle-strengthening workout since you have to pull the handle back on every stroke.
To get the technique down, try an indoor rowing class such as City Row. The studio offers classes where you’re not just rowing, but also interspersing strength training for a complete workout.
It's not just for chicks. Barry’s Bootcamp combines treadmill and resistance training for a fast-paced workout. Strength training takes place on the “floor," where you'll target a specific body part, say abs, in addition to your treadmill training. What’s cool about this class is that you superset the treadmill and strength rounds, so you’ll do an intense weight circuit followed by an intense treadmill session. Then, you’ll do another weight circuit and another treadmill session but with different moves and settings. My class had at least three treadmill workouts and three abs circuits and I was plenty sweaty afterwards.