From Brazillian Pump to Navy Seal fitness in Bahrain
Brazilian Pump It’s body pump but not as we know it. Touted as ‘the fastest way to shape up and lose body fat’, body pump is an intense aerobic workout that incorporates strength training with high-speed choreography.
Originally designed to get reluctant women using weights, you’ll be doing squats, crunches, curls and lifts carrying anything from 2kg upwards.
The difference with the Brazilian version is that it’s set to Latin music and has turned into something of a boot camp-style class with lots of guys joining the ladies for an hour of hard-core physical workout that will leave your muscles screaming but promises almost immediate effects.
After just a couple of sessions, once you’re able to walk again, you’ll find yourself more energised and toned which makes the gain worth the pain. Available at Life-Fit (17 692 424).
Power Plate Apparently a one-time favourite of Madonna and other A-listers, this involves performing traditional exercises such as squats and push-ups on a base which vibrates between 25 and 50 times a second.
The idea is that the vibrations cause an involuntary reflex muscle contraction with each vibration, rather than the normal once or twice per second, thus forcing the body to work a whole lot harder.
Makers claim using the Power-Plate for 10 minutes is equivalent to 60 minutes of conventional exercise and, having given it a go, I can believe it.
But be warned, at first it really is not nice! Going at it after no exercise for an embarrassingly long time, after 15 minutes I was ready to weep and after 30 I could barely manage the stairs down to the changing rooms. By the next morning my whole body had seized up, it even hurt to answer the phone!
However, four weeks and 10 sessions later and I could really see a significant difference (obviously helped by the absence of the usual weekend full English). Power Plate is available at Kinetix at Elite Seef Residence & Hotel (17 583 388) and Dessange (17 713 999) where 10 sessions costs BD120 or BD15 for one session.
TRX Devised by US Navy Seals who were missing their workouts while on active duty, suspension training bodyweight exercise develops strength, balance, flexibility and core stability simultaneously. The TRX Suspension Trainer is basically a system of cables that enable a fast, effective, total-body workout as you perform movements using your own body weight as the resistance factor. Think hooking them over a door frame and doing something that looks like push-ups at a 45-degree angle!
Yes, it’s bloomin’ hard going but you do see results quickly and you know it works – when did you last see a fat Seal? At Life-Fit (17 692 424), Kinetix (17 583 388) and the Gulf Hotel (17 713 000).
Fat Burn Package For those of you missing the discipline imposed by a traditional slimming club such as Weight Watchers or Slimming World, the Fat Burn Package at Life-Fit could be just the thing.
It includes a month’s gym membership, free fitness test, one personal training session per week, one class of your choice per week and weekly slimming club membership – think weigh-in, group support, nutritional advice and recipe ideas.
And don’t think this one is just for the girls, the gym has separate facilities for men and women as well as mixed classes and guys are equally welcome to fight the flab at slimming club too. Available at Life-Fit, BD132 per month (17 692 424).
Fresh Start If you fancy taking the scientific approach, Royal Bahrain Hospital has launched the Fresh Start programme which runs from one to three months and includes a free initial consultation; sessions with a registered dietician and lab tests, particularly useful for those with medical conditions such as diabetes; physiotherapy sessions, there’s gym work and physio can be used to address specific problems such as knee or back ailments which may make conventional exercise difficult and cosmetology consultations and discounts, in case you want to make the transformation complete by zapping the cellulite or tackling the wrinkles.
Spokeswoman Haifa Naseeb said: “The overall effect we’re going for is not just a change in the number on the scale. The exercise routine, meal modifications and lifestyle changes suggested all target making a person lead a healthier life.” Prices start at BD70 (17 246 832).
Dream Body Cut your workout time to just 23 minutes and still see results, can it really be true? Well, according to the people who’ve completed the Dream Body challenge, it can.
It’s a form of exercise using hydraulic machines which offer a dual action. You push with one set of muscles then return the machine to its original position using another thus getting double the workout.
It’s aimed at slimming and toning but can take a few months, combined with a set of dietary guidelines. However, since Dream Body boss Suhail Algosaibi promises results with just 23 minutes per workout, we reckon it’s worth the wait, demonstrated when the centre ran a very successful weight loss competition, and we’re told it’s one of the least painful options. Available at Dream Body Centre, which has moved to Bahrain Mall (17 613 352).
Tabata If you really want to go for fast results in just a short time, then this could be the answer.
As far as we can see it hasn’t made it to any of the gyms here yet but I read about it in one of the international newspapers and decided to find out more.
According to website www.endlesshumanpotential.com, which is run by fitness experts, there is not much to beat Tabata for cardiovascular exercise and it is possibly the most underestimated and underused training method around.
Created by Professor Izumi Tabata, a former researcher from Japan’s National Insitute of Fitness and Sports, it involves 20 seconds of maximum effort followed by 10 seconds of rest for a total of eight intervals. The max effort varies from squats to push-ups and various other exercises but the real secret is in the rest period.
Usually you would get much longer to recover but keeping it to 10 seconds is, apparently, where the speedy fat burning comes in. It’s said to be particularly effective combined with a controlled diet.
Sounds hideous but reviews say it’s ‘brutal but very effective’.
I’m going to give it a try. Barbecue beach party here I come.