As Whole Living's senior health editor (and the person responsible for our Move stories and fitness features), I get to try some pretty awesome workouts around the city. It's my job to stay on top of fitness trends, meet top trainers and athletes, and break a sweat in new (and sometimes kooky) ways. I'll be sharing my new favorite body-movers here on Whole Living Daily. Let me know what you think (and if there are any new crazes you want me to try, guinea pig style!).
The workout: Shockwave at Equinox
The gist: This 30- or 45-minute group class is circuit training with a twist. The routine centers around the Indo-Row (above), a cool new rowing machine (made from sustainable Appalachian wood!) that mimics the motion of actually pulling paddles by forcing you to yank against a circular tank of water. (Here's a video of Shockwave co-creator Josh Crosby out on the water. Let the record show: Rowing is much harder than it looks.) Students dash from high-intensity intervals at the Indo-Rows to challenging abs, legs, and back stations, completing four circuits altogether.
But there's a twist: Groups don't just jog from one station to the next when the instructor blows a whistle. Instead, you all rotate when every single person on an Indo-Row has completed a preset distance (e.g., 250 meters—which takes about two minutes). That means that when you're at a toning station—say, holding plank position with your hands on a medicine ball—your only thought is, "For the love of God, rowers, row faster!" And when you're on a machine, you're hell-bent on not finishing last and garnering the wrath of your classmates. Thirty minutes never felt so adrenaline-soaked—or so sweaty.
How I felt: The Indo-Row sent my heart rate soaring with almost alarming efficiency. As for those strength-training stations, I had no idea a half-hour class could leave me sore for four (4!) days. While I loved taking the class with other friendly fitness editors, I might have felt intimidated in a class of super-fit strangers. But for the competitive set out there, this class is a must-try.
Try it yourself: Classes are currently available in select Equinox locations in California and New York, with more rolling out later this year.