Best Workouts and Gym Classes in New York City
Pop 5: NYC Workouts For the Win
Looking for a different way to get into shape? Us too. Now that the sun is starting to stick around and it might just be time to start flashing a little more skin, we need a good lineup of gym classes to inspire us rather than expire us. Last week, we asked you to weigh in on your favorite city workouts.
Whether you prefer cycling the calories off or banning the extra pounds with cardio conditioning, exercise doesn't always have to be that dreaded hour in your day. Here's your Pop 5 fitness fixations that leave you sweaty and breathless. On the upside? You have toned legs, arms, and a flat tummy to match, which keeps you coming back for more.
- SoulCycle (various locations, pictured above) The addictive indoor cycling phenomenon has converted even the most lackadaisical fitness types. Each ride boasts 45 minutes of energetic music, inspirational coaching, and a full body workout. Readers love that no ride is the same and some are even themed: a Motown ride, a Rihanna "Love the Way You Ride" theme, a Disney ride, and, most recently, a Cinco de Mayo ride. The cycling may be trying at times, but the constant reinvention of the way it's presented is not.
- Figure 4 at Pure Yoga West (204 W. 77th St., 212-877-2025) This ballet-infused workout certainly raises the barre. Former professional ballet dancer Kate Albarelli combines classical ballet and contemporary core technique to create what she likes to call "Figure 4." It is not for the faint of heart (and yes, you will be sore) but stick with it. The class promises fat-burning cardio, transformational toning, inner strength, and enhanced posture. If ever you've dreamed of achieving sinewy ballerina limbs, Pure Yoga's Upper West Side Figure 4 class delivers.
- BuddhaXtreme (various locations) Founder Ari Kassman has created an experimental movement that fuses elements of breakdancing, martial arts, and power vinyasa yoga. The result here is an interactive "breakflow" workout, taught by a group of yogis, B-boys, and martial artists. Right now, you can catch a BuddhaX class at Earth Yoga (206 E. 63rd St., 3rd Fl., 212-486-4111) and I suggest that you do.
- Core Fusion Cardio at Exhale Spa Gansevoort Park Avenue (420 Park Ave. South, 646-380-5330) Based on the Exhale signature Core Fusion class, the cardio version takes elements of core conditioning, yoga, Pilates, and orthopedic stretching and sets it in stride. Every muscle is worked out in some way, shape, or form, but you never feel like the fat-burning mode gets too intense or tiring. Instructors employ central, lateral, and lower movements combined with two-pound free weights to encourage resistance training, all-over strengthening, and an increased heart rate.
- Tabata 2010 at Equinox (897 Broadway, 212-780-9300) This class combines high-intensity training broken down into 20 seconds of heart-rate pumping exercises followed by 10-second rest periods. Multiply these "simple" repetitions by eight, and you have insanely high-energy, fat-burning four-minute intervals that leave you winded. If you keep your eye on the prize (a fit, athletic bod), you will not regret the experience.
Source: Soul Cycle