QUIRK IT OUT
Workouts for the spin-averse
BARREBEGINNERS AT BARREFIGURE barrefigure.co.nz | @barrefigure Targets: your whole body, especially your arms, core, back, thighs and butt. At Barrefigure, the cute pink balls, purple ropes and pink weights lull you into a false sense of security, looking for all the world like the kind of breezy scene Malibu Barbie would get behind. But no. Turns out this is the toning class the Terminator would do. Think stretching and strengthening ballet-/pilates-/yogastyle moves that force you to work your entire body, but leave you feeling like a boss ballerina babe. Word to the wise: expect to shake and feel the deepest burn, and don’t do it in shorts like I did or you’ll be perma-worried that you're flashing your neighbour. POLE LEVEL 1 AT ALTITUDE altitudepoleauckland.co.nz | @altitudepolenz Targets: your whole body, promoting strength, flexibility and coordination. Everyone knows pole dancing is the ultimate for conditioning and toning. We’ve all seen those Insta-babes gliding around poles like sultry swans, so I was a bit nervous about trying it, but the best part of this class for me was that it felt really welcoming. The instructor offered such sisterly encouragement it felt like badass Girl Guides. Holding yourself up can be hard, your hands will blister and you will scuff your knees. But there’s a great sense of accomplishment that comes with picking up some impressive tricks relatively quickly. POWERHOOP WITH POWERHOOP NZ powerhoopnz.co.nz | @powerhoopnz Targets: your arms, core, glutes and legs. What better way to trick yourself into exercising than to pretend you’re a kid again? Perhaps that’s the secret to Powerhoop’s success. “Powerhoop attracts people who’ve tried so many things,” says owner Amy Mcauley. “They fall in love with this, so much so that they stay for years.” I definitely got that vibe from the class I went to — it was a very inclusive environment. This is a highenergy blend of hula hooping with a weighted hoop, aerobics, Pilates and dance. And you can’t get away from the fact it’s just really fun. This is an awesome place to start if the thought of a standard exercise class intimidates you.
We know how it is. The sun’s out, but it’s not guns out — instead, you’re breaking into a cold sweat every time you think about hitting the gym. May we suggest some alternatives? Verity Johnson tested classes around the country for anyone who’s cross trainer-averse but still wants that bangin’ bod
TWERKFIT WITH TWERK IT OUT twerkitout.co.nz | @twerkitoutnz Targets: your back, legs and overall cardio fitness. If you’re anything like me and harbour a secret suspicion that you are in fact Beyoncé, this is your jam. Designed to provide a cardio hit for those who hate spinning, it’s amazing how quickly you give in to the urge to shake what your mama gave you. There’s nothing scary about this, and if you’re worried you don’t have the right kinda buns — don’t be. Classes are designed for all booty types, and start with twerk tutorials that’ll have you moving like Bey in no time. It’s quite possibly the most fun you’ll ever have in short shorts. SAMBA BEGINNERS AT SAMBA PASSION SCHOOL sambapassion.co.nz | @gabinzdance Targets: your core, legs and overall cardio fitness. The most incredible thing about Samba Passion’s classes is the instructor Gabi Guimaraes. If her firecracker brand of effusive enthusiasm doesn’t make you want to move, nothing will. This is another good place to start if you’re intimidated by the usual workouts, because it really doesn't feel like one. It’s great cardio exercise and unleashes your inner dance goddess. Or, as Gabi puts it, “It’s about bringing out your inner beauty and allowing you to be queens and kings.” BOUNCE FITNESS AT UPTOWN BOUNCE uptownbounce.co.nz | @uptownbounce Targets: your whole body, especially your core, and overall cardio fitness. Who didn’t spend their childhood summers getting sunburned on the tramp in the garden, trying to fly? Well, now the grown-up you can do it as a workout with Uptown Bounce’s trampolining classes — low-impact full-body workouts disguised as a nostalgic good time. According to a NASA study, just 10 minutes of bouncing is equivalent to 30 minutes of running, so if you’re one of those people who struggle with treadmills because they make your shins hurt, this is for you. AERIAL LYRA BEGINNERS AT FLIP N FLY flipnfly.co.nz | @flipnflycircus Targets: your whole body. The first thing I felt at this lyra (aerial hoop) class was terrified. Especially when the instructor encouraged me to let go of the hoop and I found myself hanging upside down four metres off the ground. But the second thing I felt was an incredible sense of accomplishment. After just one class, I could perform a few moves that made me feel like a Cirque du Soleil star. These classes are the ultimate full-body workout. Every muscle is used — if only because you’re so desperate not to fall off the hoop that it kicks them all into overdrive. The result? You learn some show-stopping tricks, push yourself way beyond anything you felt capable of when you arrived, and tone up very quickly. OUTDOOR FITNESS WITH ONE TRIBE facebook.com/onetribenz | @onetribe_nz Targets: your whole body, promoting strength and coordination. This is pretty much as far from a gym workout as you can get. You wanna feel like Tarzan? One Tribe will get you out there running through forests, climbing trees, doing handstands against walls, playing balancing games on branches, climbing playgrounds… It’s like American Ninja Warrior meets The Jungle Book. Owner Philipp Spahn is all about getting people to move as naturally and freely as possible, just like back in the cavewoman days. Hence, he holds classes outdoors and uses very little equipment. If you’re up for something a little less ordinary, this could be your key to those #bodygoals. BEGINNERS STUNT SKILL WORKSHOP WITH NEW ZEALAND STUNT SCHOOL newzealandstuntschool.com Targets: your whole body and overall cardio fitness. If you’re never going to be a perfectly put together Lululemon-clad yogi babe, Stunt School has your name written all over it. Not actually a workout as such, it’s designed to teach you how to do stunts, but the beauty of it is that learning stunts is one helluva workout. You’ll run, jump, fall, tumble, punch, trampoline, flip, sword fight, ride horses and somersault in a harness, basically becoming Indiana Jones. A two-day introduction course precedes weekly training sessions, but be warned: your muscles will ache like a mofo after this, so get those Epsom salts ready. SILKS AT REACT STUDIO reactstudio.co.nz | @reactstudio Targets: your whole body, especially your arms and core. Silks may well be the tough big sister of all circus skills. They’re certainly a hard one to grasp (#pun), but the good news is that they make you into a super-strong spider monkey without lifting a single dumbbell. An average class involves a warm-up before you get onto the silks to practice climbing, hanging upside down, pull-ups and other techniques. It’ll be scary in a good way when you start, and you’ll probably feel like you can’t even lift yourself, especially if, like me, you have the upper-body strength of a drunk Tyrannosaurus rex. But after a few classes, your confidence will grow, and you’ll soon be so focused on feeling like you’re flying that you'll barely notice how strong you’re becoming.
# These workouts not out there enough for you? Check out Missfq.co.nz/nudeyoga for yoga with an extra twist.