“The ‘no pain, no gain’ approach to fitness is out the window. Being in touch with your body and focusing on what it can do is the new name of the game. Here are five hot workouts to try this year:
Zumba or other dance-infused classes
Inspired by television shows like Dancing with the Stars, Latin dancing, hip-hop and Zumba can be done by anyone at any fitness level. It brings a smile to your face and makes you break a sweat. All you need is a good pair of cross-trainers or dance sneakers that have plenty of lateral support and flexibility to allow you to twist and turn.
Ballet Barre class
This class offers core training and strengthening using a ballet barre (used by dancers for warm ups), which target the abs, legs, hips, glutes and arms with small movements that engage deep muscles. This form of exercise builds lean, graceful definition as well as flexibility and balance. Light hand weights are added to work the upper body.
Boot Camp or Total Body Conditioning
Boot camp is a challenging total body workout that infuses cardio and strength-training exercises using various pieces of equipment and the body itself as a prop; it’s a great way to release stress while burning calories. Many different exercises are applied in one class session including interval training, jumping jacks, running drills, push-ups, and hand weights. Functional training is incorporated as well – using squats, lunges and overhead stretches to help people improve their strength and abilities in the movements of everyday life.
TRX is a suspension-training harness system. It develops strength, balance, flexibility, and core stability simultaneously by leveraging the natural pull of gravity against the user’s body weight. This training system was invented by former Navy Seals and uses a set of straps attached to a wall or ceiling that allow you to work your own body weight in different directions. These exercises are done in group or individual training sessions.
Pilates Reformer class
Pilates Reformer training is done in a small group setting and is designed to integrate the mind and the body. The Reformer is a safe, sensible exercise system that uses springs to enhance resistance training and build core strength. It will assist you to move more efficiently, with greater balance, control, and alignment. With the emphasis on breathing, it increases flexibility and athletic performance, creating a sleek, toned body without the excess bulk. No matter your age or condition, Pilates will work for you. This is the ultimate in functional training.
Studies show that regular workouts keep your mind sharp, your heart healthy, and prevent disease. So what are you waiting for? Hit that barre, grab the TRX straps, dance to the beat, and just move it!