International fitness trends take south Vancouver by storm

Dallas Jones of Get Fit Vancouver (centre) leads a Nordic walking class every Sunday morning in Marpole. Photo by Nick Eagland

Students looking to shake-up their regular workout routines can discover new international fitness trends right here in south Vancouver.

Thanks to some globally-inspired classes — from Scandinavia, India and Japan– getting fit has never been more exotic.

Dallas Jones is a trainer and owner of Get Fit Vancouver in Marpole. His new Nordic walking class is based on the popular outdoor European exercise that uses poles for increased stability and muscle engagement.

Nordic walking engages 90 per cent of the body’s muscles. Photo by Nick Eagland

“It’s definitely catching on. The research says it actually burns 20 to 46 per cent more calories than normal walking.”

Jones said that because it engages the oblique chain, it strengthens a walker’s core, obliques, lats, triceps and abs.

“There are definitely more intense forms of activity out there, but if you enjoy hiking, using the poles over a long hike makes a huge difference in your posture.”

He said he hopes it encourages people who primarily walk for exercise to try something new.

Dance off the pounds with this Indian-inspired class

Esha and Jahnavi Singh teach Bollywood dance at the Langara Family YMCA. Photo by Nick Eagland

Sisters Esha and Jahnavi Singh teach Bollywood dance at the Langara Family YMCA. Esha said they want to “bring some of the colour from the Bollywood industry into the class.”

Bollywood is India’s film industry and it’s really rich in song and dance. Our class is based on the hit songs that are played in the movies. We have high-impact dance, lots of cardio and some fitness moves in it as well.”

Esha said she has lost 20 pounds since she began teaching the course in September.

“[The weight] just came off because it’s so high intensity, but you’re having so much fun you don’t even realize it.”

Japanese-style interval training coming to a gym near you

Keighty Gallagher of Tight Club demonstrates her Tabata routine. Photo by Nick Eagland

Keighty Gallagher runs Tight Club, an alternative fitness club that features a new class based on Tabata, a form of high intensity interval training created in Japan.

“It’s this form of high intensity interval training that condenses everything down to a four-minute block of work,” said Gallagher. “It’s 20 seconds as hard as you can while maintaining proper form, with a 10-second break.

“You can get as much work done in a 20-minute set of four different Tabatas as you can in an hour of weight training,” she said.

Gallagher uses body weight exercises, a resistance suspension system, and targeted stretching to ensure a balanced workout so “you get your ass kicked,” she said.

“The beauty behind Tabatas is that you can pick whichever exercises you want to put in them. I mix it so a little bit of everything is getting that burn by the end.”

Reported by Nick Eagland

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  1. Esha says

    Thanks Nick! This looks great!

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