The Road to Fitness
FROM FUN FADS TO COOL FITNESS REGIMES, TRAINERS IN THE CITY ARE OFFERING NEW MANTRAS FOR A HEALTHY KICK-START TO THE NEW YEAR.
From fun fads to cool fitness regimes, trainers in the city are offering new mantras for a healthy kick-start to the new year.
A STRETCH IN TIME
REFORM’S PHYSIOTHERAPY AND PILATES
ABOUT TWO YEARS AGO, 33-YEAR-OLD Chandana Mannedi’s, work as a physiotherapist saw her taking things a step forward by training her patients in pilates as a post-treatment workout. But her classes have been getting popular ever since and are open to anyone looking for a good pilates workout. She calls it a practice that enables body awareness and is a blend of strength and flexibility. “We don’t work up a sweat here with the goal of bigger biceps and chiseled abs. What we work on, instead, are the deep abdominal muscles behind the six packs,” she quips. So no big weights to lift here, since you work with your own body weight and props. Tone your thighs with the Pilates ring or strengthen your back on the reformer machine, or try the ball to increase stability. Many clients from Mannedi’s class are told that they look taller with the pilates practice, “and that’s because besides gaining strength and flexibility, the muscles elongate naturally and as a result, the posture is improved and you look taller.” Mannedi has been training a good number of men as well, dispelling the myth that pilates is mostly a ‘woman thing’. “The practice was, in fact, invented by Joseph Pilates for the injured soldiers of World War II,” she says.
AT Reform’s Physiotherapy and Pilates, Diamond Point, Secunderabad. DETAILS reformsphysiopilates.in
BIKRAM YOGA TELANGANA STUDIO
IT’S A CASE OF HUNDRED PERCENT PERSPIRATION alongside the inspiration when it comes to the Bikram Yoga tradition. With the sessions conducted in a heated room, you sweat your way to wellbeing, quite literally. “The perspiration helps not only with detoxification as you go about the yoga practice, but also eliminates chances of injury,” says journalist-turned-yoga-instructor, Kavita Chowdhary, 44. Her class follows the prescribed set of 26 asanas or yogic poses, working on the body and mind. “Ultimately, a state of health is state of inner balance which yoga helps you achieve,” she says, underscoring the importance of breathing right during the practice and maintaining focus. You are never too old or fat or inflexible for yoga, she assures since all you need to do is follow instructions and flow into a pose as best as you can. “Over a period of time, you will become better at it, which will result in improved immunity, correct body posture and greater confidence, just to name a few benefits.” Besides this, weight loss is almost a given, says Chowdhary. She shares the case of the lady who weighed over a 100 kg, “and would do most of her yoga asanas sitting on a chair. She too managed to lose at least four kilos, while a highly diabetic man’s insulin dosage fell dramatically with regular practice.” And with yoga, these miracles are but an everyday occurrence.
AT Bikram Yoga Telangana Studio, Izzatnagar, Hitec City DETAILS facebook.com/BikramTelangana
PACK A PUNCH
IF YOU ARE PILOXING, “you are mixing moves from pilates and boxing,” says Manasa Machani, 35, as she gets her class together for what she promises to be a “killer session”. It’s a new fad that people in the city are warming up to and so happens to be Machani’s latest passion as well, alongside zumba and prenatal yoga coaching and dietetics. As the class progresses, things indeed get more energetic, what with all the punching and grooving. It’s no surprise then that you can burn up to 1,200 calories per session. Apart from that, the blend of power-packed and graceful movements helps improve balance and posture, while working on your musculature for body sculpting. “It works very well to tone up tough spots like upper arms,” shares Machani, in the midst of a “pumping the arms” movement, barely out of breath. While at it, a few dance moves are thrown in as well to make this interval workout even more fun. If you enjoy zumba, “piloxing can give you a bigger high,” says Machani, signing off.
AT Redefine Fitness Centre, Kondapur. DETAILS facebook.com/ piloxingwithmana
ACTORS, ENTREPRENEURS, SPORTS STARS OR homemakers, Gavin Holt, 48, has trained them all over the last 27 years, so much so that a Gavin-trained fitness enthusiast is a brand unto himself. Holt, though, remains humble in the wake of such adulation and admits, almost sheepishly, that he has restarted his personal practice after years, only a few days ago. But despite that, he can effortlessly balance on a Swiss ball or work with a TRX band. Ask him about new techniques and props and he calls them fads that come and go. “Everything eventually flows from the old school or the basic form of training, which is the stretch and flex,” he says. TRX training—used widely by sports persons—is of late getting popular in the city for a full body workout, and since it is a suspension band, it is perfect for training at home or while travelling too, says Holt. “You can gradually increase the intensity of your workout by lengthening the band because the range of motion is greater,” he explains, performing a triceps extension on the band. For somebody who doesn’t have time to head to the gym, Holt suggests a high intensity interval training or tabata session at home, across a 20-minute session to include an assortment of exercises like a quick sprint, a low and high plank, mountain climb etc. “Rather than doing the same thing every day, you would benefit far more if you can rotate your workout and do different things from one day to the other,” advises Holt, “since this way you are confusing your muscles, thereby eliciting the best response from them.”
AT Gavin’z Gym, Road No 3, Banjara Hills DETAILS facebook.com/Gavinz-Gym
IDOESN’T LOOK LIKE A regular gym, since Potens isn’t one, and instead, offers a range of crossfit training activities to develop your strength, endurance, balance and more. Climb a rope, jump atop high boxes or turn a gymnast for a full body workout here. “It’s all about functional training to ease and improve everyday movements of the body, like lifting dead weights or squatting, which you would do outside the gym as well,” says trainer Sandeep Gadde, 27, adding that this is unlike conventional gyms that focus on isolated movements. Delving deeper into the technical details, Gadde adds, “crossfit training is a holistic workout wherein we work on the bigger muscle groups like hamstrings, glutes and the core etc., focusing mainly on the lower body, which enables weight loss in a more efficient way and also works the smaller muscles.” The training group is usually a mixed one, with beginners and more experienced gym enthusiasts working out together. But the practice—comprising a warmup, skill training, the actual workout and cool down—is the same for everyone with varying intensity depending on their fitness levels. The trainers dish out guidance on nutrition as well, “since what you eat forms a big chunk of your fitness,” says Gadde. Each person is also supervised individually to ensure that they are working out in the right and safe way. “While we certainly motivate our clients to push themselves, safety always comes first,” adds his colleague Simmi Gava.
AT Potens Gym, Durgam Cheruvu Road, Hitec City DETAILS facebook.com/ PotensFitness/
Cover photo by KRISHNENDU HALDER
Yoga-instructor, Kavita Chowdhary
Manasa machani (front)
Gavin Holt (in black) of Gavin’z Gym
Sandeep Gadde, trainer at Potens