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Gym Belle  - noun  one who enjoys pull-ups, push-ups, lifting things up/putting 'em down, PRs of all kinds, racing, jumping, spinning, daring and blogging re same (more here)


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Things That Make You Go Hmmm...

Locker room eavesdropping has worked out well for me in the past. After all, I learned about Ride the Zone and the moving spin bikes in the locker room at Physique 57. So, last weekend, when a girl at Exhale Gansevoort was raving about Exhale's Core Fusion Sport class, I put it on my to do list.

Core Fusion is Exhale's variation on the Lotte Berke method. Core Fusion Sport incorporates some of those movements, but it's not taught at a ballet barre and includes more lateral movements. Also, you hold a weighted ball for the majority of the time. The way the girl explained it, I envisioned a cross between Core Fusion and Steve Feinberg's Speedball classes at Equinox, which I love.

I ran before class this morning because I was awake, it was nice out, and I'd missed a few days this week. When I arrived, I was pumped. The studio was buzzing with people, but it turned out that most were there to take the open level Core Fusion class. Only three other people were taking Sport with me, and three of the four of us were newbies.

Unlike the medicine balls used in Speedball, these weighted balls have handles. I was handed a six pounder. For the first thirty minutes, we did a few series of raising and lowering the ball while in chair position. Mixed in with that were burpees, push ups with one arm on the ball and planks. My heart rate definitely got up during the burpees and continually raising the ball with straight arms gets pretty tiring. The bicep curls and rowing movements we did next were not particularly challenging with six pounds. Next time, I might switch to a heavier ball for that portion. That said, I was not sorry when we moved into the second, less intense, half of class.

Part two involved a butt series and an ab series. For glutes, we laid on yoga mats and used resistance bands to enhance some of the familiar Lotte Berke moves including leg lifts, bend-stretches, circles etc. For abs, we brought back the ball and did a variety of crunches. The handles make the ball pretty wide, so I found this to be a little awkward. I know I got my glutes; I'm less sure about my abs.

I'm reserving judgment for now; I just don't have a strong feeling on this class one way or the other. It was definitely a good workout. The class lacked energy and, um, fun-ness, but with three new people and four people total, I suspect it's worth checking out again.

I'll keep you posted.

-Gym Belle-

*The author received 50 free sessions at Ride the Zone as a prize for completing the Cyko Challenge earlier this year.*

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