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8 Offbeat Workouts in to Kickstart New Year's Resolutions

By Serena Dai | January 1, 2015 9:40am
 Getting fit doesn't have to be all treadmills and dumbbells. North Brooklyn has many fitness options — from the circus-inspired to the Beyonce-inspired — that make exercise more colorful.
Offbeat Workouts in North Brooklyn
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WILLIAMSBURG — Meeting that New Year's resolution to be more active doesn't have to be all treadmills and dumbbells.

Many gyms and boutique fitness spots in north Brooklyn offer offbeat fitness options that can get make exercising a more colorful experience — from circus-themed classes and hip-hop yoga to high intensity classes inspired by Beyonce and a sword-wielding class.

DNAinfo New York rounded up some options in Williamsburg and Greenpoint to start working towards that fitness goal with pizzazz.

Burn Calories with a Drumming-Inspired Workout

Live out a rock-and-roll fantasy by working out with drumsticks at dance fitness studio Breakin Boundaries, located at 11 Newel St. The studio offers POUND, a workout created by drummers who realized drumming movements could combine cardio, pilates and plyometrics.

Not only does it combine dancing, drumming and sculpting, POUND claims to burn between 400 and 900 calories per hour.

Cost: $18 for a single class. Class packages include $150 for ten classes and $240 for 20 classes.

Find Strength From Beyonce's Bod

Breakin Boundaries also offers a conditioning class inspired by the Queen Bee herself. The playlist always includes Beyonce, and the class uses cardio, planks and more to aim for a body that exceeds Beyonce's, said Renee Manzolillo, the studio's owner.

"The whole idea is that she is the icon, and that we're going to be better than her," Manzolillo said.

Cost: $18 for a single class. Class packages include $150 for ten classes and $240 for 20 classes.

Improve Posture By Learning How to Wield a Sword

Martial arts enthusiasts can get moving with a new swords class at the Greenpoint YMCA, located at 99 Meserole Ave. Much of the class is inspired by the same movements of Tai Chi, an exercise with "purposeful, slow movements" for both self-defense and stress reduction, according to the class description.

Don't let the slowness fool you. Studies show that Tai Chi movements improve flexibility, balance and muscle strength.

Cost: $55 monthly membership fee, plus $80 joiners fee.

Get Fit From Spinning in a Giant Hamster Wheel

Experimental dance company STREB, located at 51 North First Street, offers several offbeat classes, including a gymnastics class where attendees learn to "flip, roll, swing and invert yourself inside this giant metal hamster wheel." It's a way for folks interested in gymnastics to spin and tumble, without the high impact.

And no worries — beginners are welcome, too.

Cost: $35 for a single class or $300 for a ten class card

Increase Core Strength By Learning to Walk a Tightrope

STREB, which offers many circus-inspired classes, also offers tightrope walking classes that will work all the muscles that help with balance, like core and back strength. Beginners and more will be taught "walk, run, dance and perform tricks" on the wire, which is just one foot off the ground for safety purposes.

Cost not listed.

Do Yoga to Hip Hop and Candlelight

Not into the new age elevator music of regular yoga? Y7 Yoga Studio at 240 Kent Ave. offers two weekly vinyasa yoga classes set to the tunes of various hip-hop artists for "Hip Hop Wednesdays." Past classes have been set to Drake, Missy Elliot, Aaliyah and Jay-Z, and the theme changes each week, said Nathan Levey, Y7's owner.

"We build up the intensity of the music to the peak, and then we bring it back down to the end of class," he said.

Look to Y7's Instagram page before Wednesday's 7:00 p.m. and 8:15 p.m. classes to see if it's an artist who can inspire the flow for you. Bonus: All of the classes at Y7 are lit by candlelight for a more peaceful setting. Namaste, Drizzy.

Cost: $20 for single class. Class packages range from $89 for five to $209 for 15.

Build Your Body By Getting Into Parkour

Parkour, a physical practice in which the city is used as an obstacle course, can be done under the careful eye of instructors with stunt experience at Brooklyn Zoo, located at 230 Bogart St. The indoor parkour facility offers the class nearly every day for locals who want to get fit by becoming stuntsmen themselves.

Cost: $20 for a single class or $180 for a ten class card.

Work Your Legs By Learning How to "Trick"

Flip, kick and spin in style by learning "tricking," a martial arts and gymnastics art form that's also available at Brooklyn Zoo. According to the parkour facility, tricking requires lots of leg and core strength — and about half the class works attendees on conditioning their bodies for the crazy, explosive movements.

Cost: $20 for a single class or $180 for a ten class card.