I’ve always considered myself to be fairly active, and also pretty keen to try new things. But while I’ve always been pretty happy to just strap on my sneakers and go for a run, it’s another thing entirely to actually go to a fitness class and commit to a new type of exercise I’ve never tried – who knows what the spandex-coated instructor will make me do?! In an effort to revamp my fitness routine, I’ve gradually explored the different fitness trends that are blowing up on Instagram and tried to pin down what exactly it is about these trends that makes them so popular with so many people.
Honestly, CrossFit kind of terrifies me. While I’m happy to curl up in bed with a tub of ice cream and marvel at the feats of the annual CrossFit games (Kara Webb forever), the idea of actually participating in a class is enough to terrify the hellll out of me.
For those who aren’t in the know, CrossFit is a regime of high-intensity interval training combining heavy weights with cardio. The general idea is that intense exercise in a short amount of time is the most effective way to drop fat, build muscle and tone the body. Like any discipline, you can either go hardcore and adopt the entire lifestyle (in this case, compete in CrossFit comps, adopt the paleo diet, and share inspirational quotes on Instagram) or just focus on the parts that matter to you (such as attending classes and smashing your PBs).
If you’re interested in learning such moves as ‘The Snatch’, ‘The Split Jerk’, or ‘The Thruster’ (btw these are definitely CrossFit moves and not hip-hop moves from Step Up) then make sure you do your research and choose a gym that suits your needs. Look for a gym that will adapt to your skill levels both as a novice and as you start to improve, and one that offers a class timetable that suits your lifestyle (the last thing you want is to commit yourself to 5.30am classes when you are a total night owl). Take the time to become familiar with the routines and with your coaches – CrossFit beginners can be vulnerable to injuries if they go too hard, too fast or lack proper form.
We are no stranger to Pilates in the Style Magazines offices, the workout routine that focuses on improving flexibility, core strength and coordination.
Pilates combines practices such as yoga, acrobatics, and bodyweight training, but has adapted to be even more than its origins, with so many variations that you’ll never get bored. Many studios combine traditional Pilates practices with dance-based movement, plyometric exercise, high-intensity interval training and deep stretches.
F45 appeared on the fitness scene in 2012 and has grown into a massive community of everyday people who want to get fit, have fun and not spend two hours in the gym every day. F45 stands for Functional Training in 45-minute classes. With 27 types of high-intensity circuit-training classes, F45 has found a way to keep workouts dynamic and engaging, without being a total time-suck. There are more than 500 franchises in Australia (they are the fastest growing network of fitness studios in the country), so you’re never very far away from a studio.
As F45 is a cohesive community of studios, we can’t pick our favourites, so just check out this site to find your closest studio!
Spin classes have changed the way we approach exercise. These group classes are designed to get you seriously sweating, give you an all-time endorphin high, and burn upwards of 600 calories per session.
It sounds too good to believe, but this is the reality for so many spin-cycle-enthusiasts, and why they swear by the activity. Spurred on with pumping music and an engaging instructor, spin classes are an explosion of energy and optimism. You might feel like you’re dying, but you’ll enjoy the experience regardless. Despite spin classes being essentially the same, you still manage to get a killer workout every session and it leaves you feeling stronger than ever.
It’s likely a lot of your friends are hitting up barre these days, and while it’s different to the other kind of bar we enjoy, it’s definitely worth checking out. Barre fitness is inspired by the movements and postures of ballet and combines with other disciplines such as yoga and Pilates. Focusing on isometric strength training and high reps of small range-of-motion movements, barre classes offer a well-rounded exercise program that can be completed in just 30 minutes. Barre classes are the perfect choice for pregnant women, as well as all fitness levels.
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