Workout Wednesday: Bootcamp Pilates

Work muscles you didn't know existed

The concept: Some people joke that Pilates is like a nice lie down in Lycra. Bootcamp Pilates though? It’s definitely not that. With only ten people in each class, each with their own sci-fi sounding Reformer (in reality, a machine with six springs and two bands which provide adjustable resistance during the exercise), it is an intense and effective hour-long workout, targeting your core, but also working on wobbly extremities with hand-held weights. After the first class (it is recommended you do between one and three beginners classes to get used to the equipment) you will ache in places you didn’t know existed. By the third class you’ll feel smugly firmer in the places that perhaps existed a little too much beforehand. I’m doing it alongside my newbie ELLE Running Club training, and it’s definitely helping me to feel steadier on my feet.

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What you need: Gym gear that won’t ride up or flop over your head when you’re doing downward dog – tight is right, in this instance. These brilliant Nike Studio Wrap shoes are good to make sure you don’t slip, but barefoot is just fine too. Bring a bottle of water if you think you’ll need it – but this isn’t a cardio class, so you could happily do without.

Difficulty rating: Medium. But ounce you’ve built up from the beginner level, you will have the hang of it. OK, so 60 seconds in plank on a machine that moves if you wobble is never going to be easy, but it gets easier pretty quickly. And just look at the instructors if you want proof of the toning and stretching power of the class.

Location: London studios in City, Notting Hill, Fulham, Richmond

Cost: £12 for the first two off-peak classes, from £19 for an off-peak class thereafter (It’s cheaper if you buy a bundle)

How do I book? Visit bootcamppilates.com

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