When you settle into a fitness routine, nothing beats the endorphin rush you get post-workout. And now it’s possible to combine a fat-burning, muscle sculpting workout with the power of boxing – without the risk of a broken nose or cauliflower ears. This year we’re trying Piloxing!
It’s an intense core-centric interval workout founded and designed by Swedish dancer and celebrity trainer, Viveca Jensen, who had been searching for a way to help women attain a powerful self-image. While Pilates is a beneficial exercise for sculpting and flexibility, if you combine it with elements of boxing, you create a complete HIIT (high intensity interval training) program for cardiovascular health. “Piloxing engages every major muscle group, building strength, agility, and power as it pushes you to your limits,” explains Lauren Suddaby, owner and instructor at Studio Technique in Burlington and trainer at The Clarity Centre in Oakville. While surprisingly vigorous, it’s very low impact on the joints since there is no jumping involved. “You’re combining the speed, agility and strength of a boxer, while working on your toning and flexibility with Pilates.”
The class may be tough, but it’s also a good time. A typical Piloxing class is high energy and amazing fun – there’s a lot of dancing and even laughing, but if you don’t like to sweat, it’s probably not the class for you. What you can look forward to is one hour of alternating boxing and Pilates segments (or blocks). Suddaby gets the class moving (and sweating) with seven-minute segments of boxing movements to jack up the heart rate, followed by a seven-minute Pilates sequence which lowers the heart rate but still tones the muscles and works your flexibility. Then the class moves into the next boxing block and so on. She recommends doing the workout at least twice a week.
You can attend a class without any equipment, and in your bare feet. Performing the exercises in bare feet also helps develop the stability muscles in your feet and ankles. “It encourages you to become one with the floor,” says Suddaby. You can start off wearing shoes if it’s too intense, then a few weeks down the road you may find you can do the whole workout barefoot.”
Piloxing benefits the entire body. It’s a cardiovascular interval workout for the heart that also focuses on a body part that everyone wants to tone: the core. Muscle toning and sculpting can be achieved without worrying about bulking up like a weight lifter. Instead you’ll see leaner, firmer arms, thighs and stomach. Suddaby also says it’s empowering. “Every move has been specifically designed to build strength and stamina but also offers a sexy component. Strong is definitely the new sexy and this workout showcases that.”
Float Like a Butterfly
One of Suddaby’s favourite Piloxing class moves is the jab forward (a boxing move). “Jabs are big, aggressive punches and I feel very powerful when executing them,” she explains. “It can help build strength, confidence, and can help you understand that women kick butt!” While you may never acquire the ability to deliver the quick-witted verbal jabs of Mohammad Ali, you will definitely develop a stronger physique and a more powerful sense of self.
Try Piloxing for your New Year’s fitness resolution!
Studio Technique, Burlington
Several classes offered every week, first thing in the morning and after work.
The Clarity Centre, Oakville
A new block of four-week Piloxing Fusion classes begins on January 9.
Article written by Becky Dumais