By NATALIA HAWK
You know what I love about living in Sydney? It’s so fitness-y and health-focused. On weekends, the beaches and parks are always packed with people enjoying the great outdoors – volley-balling, kayaking, walking their dogs. It’s got a buzz about it that is unparalleled in any other city.
You know what I don’t love about living in Sydney? The amount of fitness trends that come and go all the time. Every other week, it feels like I wake up and a new hybrid of yoga-cycling-tennis has been born. And everyone’s trying it and going on about its benefits. And I have no idea what they’re talking about.
Enter: Nat’s Guide To Fitness Trends. Some of these trends are new, some are older, some are awesome and some are seriously weird. But hey – by the end of this post, you will be considerably more knowledgeable about all things fitness-trendy.
1. Vibration training.
I am going to look into my crystal ball and predict that vibration training will be the Next Big Thing in fitness over the coming years. It’s something that started with Russian cosmonauts and is now used by celebrities such as Kylie Minogue, Serena Williams and – randomly – Clint Eastwood.
Essentially you stand on a platform, which vibrates. A lot. And then you do various exercises on it. Lunges, push-ups, planks, crunches – the vibrations from the machine work your muscles harder so that you build core strength, stability and balance without getting too fatigued. It also can help increase joint mobility, muscle mass and blood circulation.
A few gyms are now introducing the machines, and there are also studios starting to pop up – I tried it at Spunky Fitness in Darlinghurst, who run great classes for only four people at a time (so you don’t feel too ridiculous when you’re lying down with your legs wrapped around a vibrating machine… awkward).
2. Barre workouts
Barre workouts are taking off throughout the US and there are a few classes already available in Australia.
It’s a workout that’s focused on the barre typically used by ballet dancers – only it’s not just ballet.
It’s a fusion of dance, yoga and pilates, and seriously good for wannabe ballerinas who might not have the coordination required for actual dancing.
However, it’s more about toning the body and muscles rather than losing weight and burning calories – so if that’s what you’re after, perhaps skip ahead to…
Contrary to what its name might suggest, bokwa is not a vegetable often used in Asian stir-frys. That’s bok CHOY. Bokwa is just like Zumba, only without the choreography. Rather than following moves, you draw letters and numbers with your feet. Copious amounts of energy are required, so perhaps invest in several Red Bulls before trying it.