We all know the importance of keeping fit, but when the gym starts to get repetitive (and fries taste so damn good) it can be hard to keep motivated. Here are eight unique fitness classes to try in Melbourne that are guaranteed to bust you out of your rut and get you fighting fit again.
1. Burlesque Dance Classes
The health benefits of dance are well documented – from improving the condition of your heart and lungs, to increased stamina, stronger bones, and improved mental functioning – dance is one of the best full body workouts for people of all shapes and sizes. For a fun and flirty dance session that won’t even feel like a workout (until the next day at least), check out the range of classes held at Maison Burlesque, the hub of Melbourne Burlesque.
2. Yoga In The Sky
Yoga is another great full body workout, with a documented history back to 3000 B.C.! With so many variations of the practise it’s always easy to keep things interesting, but for a real unique spin on yoga, why not try a natural high on the Melbourne Star? Have a go at the hour long Vinyasa flow class up above the world in a fully enclosed glass cabin because, well, why not?!
3. Aqua Zumba
Aqua classes have a reputation as being for older gym-goers, but the numerous benefits of exercising in water make this class great for people of all ages. Not only does working out in water increase your endurance and help you tone up seriously fast (due to the mix of cardio and strength training you’ll naturally do in the pool), but the buoyancy of the water is great for those looking for a low impact class that’s easier on your joints. Don’t think you’re getting off lightly just because it’s better on your body though – an Aqua Zumba class will burn around 700 calories per hour.
4. Hoops, Thighs & Buttocks
Don’t feel too bad if you’ve ever eyed a gleeful child effortlessly twirling a coloured hoop around their waist with envy – hula hooping is one of those skills that we all seem to fall out of as we grow up. The fabulous crew at Hoops, Thighs & Buttocks are here to remedy that though, and with their range of classes for hoopers of all levels, you’re sure to be hooping again in no time.
5. Roller Skating
Another blast from the past, roller skating remains a great way to keep fit while having fun (even if the practise has largely fallen out of vogue). Caribbean Rollerama offers a range of classes from absolute beginners of all ages to artistic coaching for the wheely talented, and with a huge range of skates and blades available to hire, all you need to bring is your groovy self (maybe leave your pride at home for the first few lessons).
6. Dancehall @ Jungle City
You might be familiar with dancehall infused music from the likes of pop artists such as Justin Bieber, Drake, and Rihanna, but dancehall as a genre actually found popularity in Jamaica as early as the 1970’s. What began as a freestyle movement in Jamaican dance halls became a cultivated, choreographed style that spread throughout the African diaspora, eventually reaching the mainstream Western dance and music communities where it maintains a highly influential position today. Try a class at Jungle City Studios in Brunswick for an authentic intro to dancehall.
7. Trees Adventure
Not for the faint of heart, Trees Adventure at Glen Harrow Park is home to Australia’s #1 tree ropes and zipline experience. Soar through the Dandenongs during a 2.5 hour session (all training included). You’re never in any real danger with Trees Adventure’s world class safety system, but between the dizzying heights and the challenging obstacle course, you’re sure to get your heart racing.
8. Aerial Yoga
A different kind of sky high yoga to performing a Vinyasa flow on the Melbourne Star, Body Flow Yoga offers a range of aerial yoga classes – that is, yoga performed in silk hammocks suspended from the roof. Also known as anti-gravity yoga, aerial yoga is designed to relieve compression on the spine and offer support in a variety of poses. Start with the Aerial Intro class for beginners, and, as with trying any new kind of exercise, be sure to consult with your doctor first.