Raise Your Fitness Game

HIITtraining?That’s so last year. Bikram? Been there, wore the small pants.We asked the experts for the hottest fitness trends of 2014 and howthey’ll transformyour body forever

The new cross training
WHAT IT IS: Fear not. This high-intensity interval training isn’t half as scary as its predecessor. It is based around a free motion bar, where the more force you apply to it, the more resistance you have pushed back against you from the machine. “This form of training reduces micro tearing of the muscles so you don’t get muscle soreness and will still want to train the next day,” says physiotherapist Stuart Ayles. Steady on now.
CALORIE BURN: 800-1,200 per 45-minute session.
GREAT FOR: Arms and overall fitness levels.

The new Pilates
WHAT IT IS: It might sound like the latest wigheaded indie band, but Essentrics is, in fact, a Pilatesinspired workout based on stretching muscles before strengthening them in the elongated position to create a longer, leaner, more toned shape. “It makes your waist thinner, stomach flatter, legs leaner and bum more toned. Most people see resultswithin a month,” says celebrity fitness
expert LauraWilliams. Now that’smusic to our ears.
CALORIE BURN: 276 per 30-minute session.
GREAT FOR: Posture and sculpting lean muscle.


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The new spinning
WHAT IT IS: The wait is over. SoulCycle, a cycling and body-sculpting class, has a cult following in the US and now it’s coming here. As riders mount stationary bikes, the lights are dimmed, candles are lit and the instructor cues a playlist that’s timed to give you motivation and energy just when you need it. “Giving encouragement directly with motivation means you’ll keep going back,” says
David Stalker, CEO of UK Active. Count us in.
CALORIE BURN: 500 per 45-minute session.
GREAT FOR: Thighs, bum and cardio fitness.

The new Zumba
WHAT IT IS: If you have two left feet then Bokwa might be the dance workout for you – as long as you knowthe alphabet. The South Africanborn cardio-dance craze focuses on drawing letters
and numbers with your feet. Then you add shoulder shakes, jumps and… well, whatever you want really. “You’ll end up drippingwith sweat by the end, but it doesn’t even feel like exercise because you’re having fun,” says trainer Giancarla Pozzo. Shimmy on down.
CALORIE BURN: 530 per one-hour session.
GREAT FOR: Intense cardio and flexibility.

The new dumbbells
WHAT IT IS: These neoprene sand-filled weights are a cross between a sandbag, dumbbell, grip bag, medicine ball and kettlebell. In weights from3kg to 12kg, you can slam, smash, drop and throw them – ideal for circuit training. “You get a diferent workout every time and surprising your body boosts weight loss,” says Lee Matthews, head of fitness at Fitness First. Just don’t try ‘smashing’ a kettlebell now.
CALORIE BURN: 300 per one-hour session.
GREAT FOR: Arms and core.

Hyperwear SandBell

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The new aqua aerobics
WHAT IT IS: If you love spin but your joints don’t, there’s a workout that’s just as efective – and kinder to your body. The bikes at aquAllure rest on the pool floor and use waist-high water for resistance. “The low-impact cardio improves aerobic endurance, increases breathing capacity and improves blood flow and flexibility,” says Stalker. Pedal power indeed.
CALORIE BURN: 200 per 30-minute session.
GREAT FOR: Saddlebags.

The new Balletcise
WHAT IT IS: Barrecore is a hybrid of Pilates and ballet, with cardio, light weights, isometric movement and, of course, moves at the barre. “The isometric movement drives insulin into the cells,” says Williams. “It helps your body utilise sugar in your bloodstream instead of storing it as fat.” But it’s not all about weight loss. “Ballet improves posture so your waist looks smaller.” Legwarmers optional.
CALORIE BURN: 500-600 per one-hour session.
GREAT FOR: Bum, core and overall toning.

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The new circuit training
WHAT IT IS: If you want a 360 workout, you need this piece of kit in your life. The all-in-one apparatus is flexible and has options for strength, resistance, stability, coordination, flexibility and speed. “This is best for private or small group training, with the instructor standing in the middle of the group,” says Alan Holl, head of fitness at Virgin Active. That means no hiding at the back of the
class – we know your tricks.
CALORIE BURN: 300 per 30-minute session.
GREAT FOR: All-over toning.

The new inverted yoga
WHAT IT IS: It looks like a baby bouncer, but don’t worry, no-one’s going to burp you. In anti-gravity yoga, you use a hammock to do yoga, Pilates and dance moves. Converts, including Gwynnie,
say the technique allows them to get into advanced inverted poses other exercises can’t reach. “AntiGravity yoga relieves compressed joints and aligns the body, so you can stretch further,” says
fitness expert Brett Hoebel. No spitting out your dummy.
CALORIE BURN: 600 calories
per one-hour session.
GREAT FOR: Your back.

Inversion Sling - Yoga Swing
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The new Bikram
WHAT IT IS: If standing on your head on a mat is hard, try doing it on water. Paddleboard yoga has set sail fromthe States and arrived in the UK. SUP yoga is for all levels, even if you haven’t mastered every pose on dry land. “There’s a calmness to being gently rocked by the water so even though you’re working harder than on a yoga mat you adapt to the board quickly,” says
paddleboard yoga instructor Jana Olenio. Worth checking the shipping forecast first.
30-minute session.
GREAT FOR: Core and thighs.