19 September 2019
| THE HEARTBEAT OF WOMEN'S SPORT

Natalie Tries: Whipped!

May 24, 2014
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In the heart of Kensington, sharing a building with Simon Cowell’s office, is Equinox – the luxury fitness centre, and allegedly the most expensive gym in the country. And beyond the endless marble, polished wooden floors, gleaming mirrors and intimidating-looking equipment, they’re actually offering some fantastic fitness classes.

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Whipped! Is the latest High Intensity Interval Training class to pop up in the capital – and you will certainly be feeling whipped, battered and broken when you’re done. In a refreshing change of trend, you actually get to use equipment – lots of it! And I would hope so given how much it costs to be a member of this gym – I want more than just a studio and my own body weight.

As much as I see the value of using your own body weight and functional movements, it’s nice to get your hands on some gym kit – and it enables you to add a bit more variety to your routines. This is one of the most diverse interval classes I’ve attended for a long time.

The Class

You’re on a timer, and it’s basically circuits – really good circuits. There are stations all around the studio with a different piece of kit at each one. You partner up and hit a station, work for thirty seconds on each station before moving on. You do each station twice and the whole thing takes around 45 minutes including a warm-up and active recovery.

It’s a full-body workout. Our brilliant instructor Rory carefully engineered each of the stations to ensure that no muscle was left unused. Bent-over rows with dumbbells and a bar burn your triceps, box jumps work your quads, crunches on a balance ball blast your abs – everything’s covered.

The highlight of the class has to be the heavy ropes. Lying ominously in the centre of the room, I knew they were going to be tough. For the first three seconds, whipping the ropes as fast as you can feels fun – but the burn kicks in almost immediately. Your core strains under the weight of the ropes and when you add in upper-cuts, squats and lunges to the movements you’ll soon be exhausted.

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The Plus Points

–       Fitness. The intervals rapidly raise your heart rate with very short periods of rest – training like this gives you a huge anaerobic boost and you’ll see your fitness levels rocket!
–       Fun. At only 45 minutes the class is over just beforeit starts to get to hard – you can really push yourself – even when you’re exhausted, 30-second reps are manageable.
–       Luxury. The gym is incredible – with Kiehl’s shower gel, complimentary razors and mouthwash and a steam room in the changing room – you’re not going to want to leave.

The Minus Points

–       Pricey. It’s not exactly cheap. At £183 per month, this is a serious investment. You’d have to use a LOT of free mouthwash to get your money’s worth.
–       Atmosphere. The energy in the class was great, but the clientele didn’t seem the fun-loving type. Maybe not the best environment for group fitness classes.

Having said that, I’d love to go again. It’s the perfect class for boosting both your strength and fitness. If you want to give it a try head to www.equinox.com

Natalie Morris, Sportsister
The Women’s Sport Magazine

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