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Thursday, 1 September 2016

Body Balance & Sh'Bam

Yesterday was a pivotal moment. I entered a Gym.

Ok, so I didn't let myself lose on all the scary looking equipment but I did adorn a full active wear wardrobe for the occasion- so at least I may have looked like I knew what I was doing. Two observations from hiding waiting in the carpark: everyone coming in drove a mini cooper and everyone coming out showed no sign of exertion or redness. This was about to change.
Photos from H&M, Collaged by moi.

  • Sports Bra- Low Support ~ £12.99~ H&M
  • Sports Vest Top ~ £7.99 ~ H&M
  • Yoga Tights ~ £19.99~ H&M (No, a Zebra didn't throw up on me) 
If your new to a gym, to entice you in before they ply you with fluffy dressing gowns, unlimited towels and expensive membership you can often download a 1 to 7 day free pass. This is what I did so my 2 classes were completely free! 

B O D Y  B A L A N C E 

  • Improves flexibility, core-strength, cardio-vascular function 
  • Burns calories
  • Reduces stress
Image Credit

This is a mat-class where in bare feet you go through positions and poses from Tai Chi, Pilates and Yoga.  Having no experience of any of these practices it was difficult but gave me a taster of each discipline. Each pose and stretch is held for a certain amount of time, led by a very bendy instructor and it's about centering yourself, keeping your In and Out breath steady (in my case actually remembering how to breathe was my concern!), poses progressed to work different muscles (of which I apparently didn't know existed) and pace increased with the sequences of different actions. The session was completed with a 10 min relaxation meditation. This was brilliant! Something I try to do to get to sleep or take time out of life. My experience in Ballet merely helped to shape my arms and point my feet- which although to me was aesthetically pleasing, wasn't particularly helpful. I did however keep some balance most of the time which redeemed me from my inability to touch my toes. The class lasts for 45 minutes with the 10 mins relaxation on the end. The overall vibe was relaxed and calm and was more enjoyable with a playlist of pop music in the background.  For the most part despite the instructor demonstrating in practice (and verbally) each pose I wasn't entirely sure if I was doing it correctly and may come to harm in my over-enthusiastic lunge so I would recommend a beginners class/ 1:1 in Yoga before committing to a Body Balance class.

S H' B A M

  • Improves co-ordination
  • Increases cardio-vascular fitness
  • Burns calories
  • Fun and lifts mood
Image Credit

Adorned in glow-stick bangles this class takes aerobics to a whole other level! Sh'bam is a 45 minute to an hour cardio based workout and as long as your having fun and keep moving thats all that really matters. If you want to do an aerobics class do this instead- it is so exhilarating and fun! It's all in the dark with disco lights so it doesn't matter if you mess up and each song has different routines that you can put your own spin on depending on your stamina level or dance flair. You don't have to be a dancer and you don't have to be super fit. The instructor burst with energy and motivation. The moves are generally pretty easy to pick up and are repetitive. It is so absorbing; you feel like your killing it on a dance floor rather than doing any mundane exercising. Sh'bam is relatively new and could be compared to the more well-known Zumba however there are many differences and I think Sh'bam is more accessible in terms of music: Zumba is latin music, Sh'bam is hip hop/Pop and you find yourself singing along to the tunes (like your in your own music video). Unlike Zumba to teach Sh'bam you have to be a certified instructor so it is reassuring to know that your in good hands and being led through a class with top-notch teaching quality. For anyone wanting to keep fit but find exerscing boring or embarrassing I fully recommend Sh'bam!