6 Interesting Fitness Classes You Probably Haven’t Tried But You Should
Try These 6 Workouts To Mix Up Your Routine
Head to a group exercise class to keep your exercise routine interesting, challenging, and fun. You’ll get the best of both worlds: fun training with the necessary structure and guidance from a qualified instructor. There are so many options available now for group classes. Choose from aerial yoga and rebounding to underwater spinning, cardio circuits, pilates reformer classes and much more.
You’ll usually find a fairly comprehensive program at most gyms. Fitness has evolved so much that, for the most part, most gyms have a huge selection of classes. If you can’t find what you’re looking for at your gym, there are also great group classes offered at smaller studios and boutique fitness centers that are also worth checking out. We also offer some of the classes below on our fitness vacations, providing variety in the daily schedule. Either way, if you’re looking for something different and feel like you need a change from your usual training, check out these classes.
HULA HOOPING CLASS
You probably thought hula hooping was a thing of the past or something you only did as a kid. Think again! Hula hoop classes have become a fantastic way to move your body in a completely different way. Set to music, you’ll move and wiggle to the beat of your instructor’s choreography.
Fitness hoops are usually weighted, which gives you a bit of resistance and makes this class more challenging than the regular hoop you might have done years ago. You’ll need to steady yourself to maintain control and balance while getting your heart rate up!
According to the American Council On Exercise, you can burn up to 600 calories per hour with this full-body workout. In addition, it will improve flexibility and balance, as well as strengthen the muscles of the back, abdominals, arms and legs. Some gyms even merge hooping into other classes like Pilates and yoga.
Gliding discs make any workout more challenging. In general, sliding discs are placed under the hands or feet, depending on the movement, increasing the level of intensity without impact. You’ll have to work harder to maintain balance, stability, and control while performing moves like lunges, squats, skaters, planks, rock climbers, shuffles, and more. Sounds like fun?
You can try sliding at a local gym or studio. Some classes are all gliding: 50 minutes of upper body, lower body, and core work. Some studios may also merge sliding, like hula, with other fitness classes to mix things up. Either way, the moves are fun and effective. Pro Tip: If you slip at home, you can always use paper plates on carpet or towels on hardwood floors. However, be careful of slipping. Try a few moves before starting a full workout.
BODY WEIGHT TABATA
Bodyweight Tabata is one of our guests’ favorite classes at the retreat. This class can be done anywhere, but we do it on the beach, so the views and atmosphere make it a whole different ball game. This fitness class is challenging! Most of the movements are movements that many people have done before: push-ups, planks, dips, squats, lunges, power lifts, forearm raises, fast feet and more. Doesn’t sound complicated or difficult, does it? However, it’s the format and tempo that changes everything for this workout.
If you’re not familiar with Tabata, the format is 20 seconds of hard work followed by 10 seconds of rest 8 times. For example, we would do 20 seconds of push-ups x 10 seconds of rest 8 times which equals about 4 minutes. 20 seconds of work may not seem like much, but when you repeat it over and over again, it tests your muscles in a really great way. You are sure to feel the burn with this exercise!
Don’t worry, you don’t have to join us for a fitness vacation just to try this class. There are many gyms and studios that offer it as well. Keep an eye out for Tabata or even a HIIT class that uses only bodyweight.
A recovery class that focuses on releasing tight and tense muscles and connective tissue. In general, we do too much stretching and strengthening and not enough of the recovery work to keep the muscle and fascia relaxed and balanced. Some stretching classes will fuse myofascial release with them. Other classes may focus solely on deep release or foam rolling.
According to Yoga Medicine, the term myofascial release refers to any technique that works on the muscles and fascia. There are many different modalities; however, the most common self-myofascial release (SMFR) techniques generally involve the use of foam balls or rollers. The beauty of SMFR is that it can be done with simple tools and training. Which means that it is a very accessible tool.
You will most likely see a combination of group classes and/or private sessions when it comes to this type of remedial work. Either way, it’s important as part of a balanced exercise routine. It’s also important to do it correctly, so while you could do it at home, I recommend taking at least one class or session with a professional to learn the proper technique.
AERIAL YOGA OR AERIAL SILKS
Depending on the gym and/or class, you may see this referred to as aerial yoga or aerial silks. Either way, get ready for a totally different yoga experience! These classes are basically a combination of yoga and acrobatics. You will explore the asanas from a support material (such as a hammock) that hangs from the ceiling. This support will give you less joint compression during certain inversions and a better range of motion for other poses like hip-opening pigeon.
Now this might sound complicated, but it’s not as crazy as it seems on paper. You don’t need previous experience, but be sure to let the instructor know it’s your first time. Although he will be using material suspended from the ceiling, his feet will still be able to touch the ground. As you practice this type of yoga, you will have the opportunity to improve your strength and flexibility. We all need a little of that!
BALANCE TRAINING WITH APPARATUS
An entire class dedicated to balance training? Yes! Channel your inner gymnast: okay, not really, but get ready to improve your balance and coordination. Balance training is great for everyone. It is something we practice in retreat on a constant basis. However, what makes these types of classes fun for people is the inclusion of different equipment.
For example, we use small stability discs, larger balance aids like the Bosu, and even balance tools that resemble a balance beam to strengthen feet and ankles, challenge balance, and refine the mind-body connection. Body. It makes the class challenging and fun at the same time. Many of the movements require focus and concentration making this class a totally different experience. It’s hard and challenging, but it goes by quickly because you really have to think about what you’re doing.
Visit your local gym for balance classes. Again, you may see fusion classes that incorporate a combination of balance and strength or balance and core, so keep an eye out for creative names and read the descriptions.
IMPROVE YOUR PHYSICAL TRAINING
Have fun with fitness! Try new workouts to keep your head and body in the game. Change is always good and it’s fun to mix it up with interesting workouts. You just might find a new favorite fitness class! If you’re not sure about the classes and what they entail, ask an employee so you can better understand what you might be getting into.
Enjoy trying something new. Don’t be discouraged if you have a little difficulty in that first class. It is normal! Give yourself a break and the opportunity to learn a new activity. Most instructors will offer modifications, but feel free to ask for one if you don’t feel comfortable or are unsure about an exercise.
If you’re not sure where to start or where to look for classes, check out Class Pass. It’s a great way to try out a bunch of different classes and studios in your area.