Tag: fitness centre

Power Plate: Workout review

I finally got my butt out to try a Power Plate workout. I’d been dreading it (and thus, procrastinating).

And my verdict?

This workout doesn’t suck. In fact, I like it.

Fans of Power Plate include super svelte celebs such as Jennifer Garner, Heidi Klum and Courtney Cox Arquette. The workout involves this machine (right) which transmits waves of energy through your  body as it subtly vibrates, which activates 25-50 muscle muscle contractions per second in your body. It’s this whopping number of contractions that leads to greater muscle strength, improved circulation and improved performance. All resulting in what seems to be the holy grail of physical fitness (in shorter workout time, to boot): a strong core.

How it works: I worked out for 30 minutes one on one with Sarah Paul of Flex Rx  Studio and she led me through a number of different exercises using the Power Plate, from squats and crunches to balance poses and stretches.

Pros: Get more of a workout in less time, love it. Plus, Sarah’s got an endless number of exercises so you’ll have a different workout every time so you won’t get bored. You also get the benefit of Sarah’s expertise as Flex Rx is Toronto’s only private facility that exclusively offers  one-on-one training on the Power Plate. This also means you can’t slack off as I am sometimes prone to do (Sarah’s sweet…but there’s no skipping reps under her watchful eye!).

And you most certainly work those muscles. I felt that lovely “my muscles got a decent workout” feeling the day after. My favourite part of the workout, though? You don’t sweat like a pig. I hate to sweat, always have. And on the Power Plate, you gradually build up heat internally, so it’s a subtle sweat you get going on.

Cons: The vibration may not be ideal for those with vertigo. But you should be fine if you only occasionally experience motion sickness, as I do — I got through the Power Plate workout without feeling nauseous at all. (During crunches, however, when the vibrating made my vision all shaky, I did kinda feel like I was seeing into an alternate reality à la Agent Olivia Dunham on Fringe — but that was just kinda cool).

I checked in with my beauty blogger buddy Janine Falcon of Beauty Geeks as she’s been doing the Power Plate thing for almost three months. She started with a session once a week but upped it to two when she was suddenly able to do proper crunches. “The workout’s pretty intense although it’s not big movement,” says Janine. “And Sarah is easy to work with, even if she is laughing as she ups the intensity every session.” Janine also loves that it’s a private studio. “So no-one can see me flopping around like an out-of-water whale!”

Intrigued by the Power Plate? Here’s the good news: Health & Swellness has got you the hook up! Health & Swellness readers get two  complimentary 30-minute workout sessions at Flex Rx Studio with Sarah Paul (regular new clients just get one) — just mention this blog when booking your first free session. This way you get to try it out twice before deciding if you want to invest in the $40/session workouts (you save a little if you buy a package of 10 workouts for $350). Let me know how you like it!

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9 Comments March 1, 2010

Snowboard like a pro (or at least train like one)

Launching tonight at Extreme Fitness Richmond in downtown Toronto: Fit2Shred, a group training program for snowboarders.

Developed for Extreme Fitness by Joe Costa (he’s one of the cofounders of Mind to Muscle, a company that trains pro athletes including the Canadian National Snowboard Team), Fit2Shred focuses on improving foot speed agility, core strength, leg power, balance and muscle conditioning — all key for boarders aiming to improve hill, halfpipe and park performance.

Fit2Shred classes are free for Extreme Fitness members. Non-members, don’t fret: you can sample one class gratis — just drop in or email shred@extremefitness.info to reserve a spot.

And even if you’re spending more time landing on your butt than busting ollies, at least you can snowboard in style with this luxe European-cherrywood version from Chanel. Is it wrong that this board alone makes me want to pick up the sport? (This Chanel snowboard, signature pouch included but not the bindings, will set you back $3,525, in case you were wondering).

Leave a Comment January 15, 2010

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