Kondition Fitness, 3161 Walnut St., Boulder, 303-444-5505, konditionfitness.com
Instructor: For 10 years, Audrey Gibson has been teaching hip hop and contemporary dance. She joined Kondition Fitness a month ago when the studio opened its Boulder doors.
Kondition is located in the building that once housed Café Alvarez and has been transformed into a Swedish-style contemporary fitness studio. Kondition Fitness even invited the previous tenants to its grand opening, where they once served chile verde.
What is the workout? Equal parts dance class and workout.
Cardio-through-dancing is the main goal. Every class incorporates light weights for arm-toning exercises, some planks and core exercises.
Gibson demonstrates a dance move and students follow along, then she adds in another move until there is a short combo. Once the music changes it starts all over again with a new combination of moves.
"The goal is for people to jump right in and ... throw out all their energy," said Gibson.
Students mimic the moves, but there is no stopping to work on technique — it's not that kind of class. Gibson said it's about, "having fun and distracting you from how hard doing constant cardio is."
It's a laid-back class, but there's too much going on to worry about how you look.
"It's exercise, but fun," said Gibson.
While the classes are taught by a couple different teachers, they each re-use their combos, so students don't have to learn new moves every time.
They occasionally switch out a combo to keep it fresh.
What's different? There are dance classes and then there are workout classes. With dance classes, the main focus is learning technique or choreography. Workout classes might throw in some basic dance moves, but working out is the objective. This class is situated smack dab in the center of these two categories.
There are parts that fall into both categories, but on the whole it manages to straddle both. When you're in a plank or using the light weights, you know you're working out. When you're sashaying, side-stepping or box-stepping, you know you're dancing.
In a regular dance class, there is more focus on technique with a higher level of self-criticism. In this class, it's not about getting the moves right — just trying them will suffice.
Cost: Drop-in pricing is $26. Kondition Fitness is running a special for $30 for a week of unlimited classes. A 10-class pass is $225 and monthly unlimited is $199.
Level: Beginner to intermediate. No previous dance experience is necessary. The studio has plans to implement an advanced version for people with a dance background at some point.
The first couple classes will be the hardest. Since the combos stay the same, it gets easier the more you go.
When: 9:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. Tuesdays, 10 a.m. Wednesdays, 9:30 a.m. Thursdays, noon on Fridays, 10:30 a.m. Saturdays and 10 a.m. Sundays.
What to prepare: Comfortable workout clothes for easy movement. Wear indoor athletic shoes and bring water.
Muscles worked: This as a full-body cardio workout. My arms were fatigued from the toning exercises, but I was more sweaty than sore.
What I loved: It was so much fun. I could use fancier words, but that might obfuscate from the point. Even when I didn't have the coordination or timing right, I was laughing and sweating. Gibson's enthusiasm and welcoming smile takes away the pressure to feel like you're on display. I was far too busy to look at anyone else or care if they were looking at me.
What I didn't like: There's an unavoidable learning curve that will be intimidating for some people. I had a hard time hearing Gibson during class. The music wasn't overly loud, so it might have been the microphone or the room acoustics in question.
How I felt after the class: After a long and rather painful day, getting my groove-on made everything better. There's nothing quite like waving your hands in the air like you just don't care.
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