New Year, New Me, blah blah.
Everyone gets onto the fitness bandwagon in the New Year, fact. But not everyone sticks to it because as we all know, exercise can be boring as fuck, especially when it’s repetitive.
As someone who has been in and out of gyms for the best part of 15 years, I have realised that the key to ‘sticking to it’ is injecting a bit of fun and variety into your schedule because at the end of the day, you should enjoy what you’re doing.
From unusual styles of dance to funky yoga, Manchester isn’t short of weird and wonderful classes that are guaranteed to spice up your gym life, so if you want to make your 2020 fitness journey one to remember, check out our list below.
Lindy Hop is an American dance style made popular in New York City in the late 1920’s. Also popular during the swing era of dance in the late 1930’s and early 1940’s, Lindy Hop is a colourful hybrid of tap, jazz, the Charleston, swing and breakaway and is easily one of the quirkiest dance styles out there. Every Tuesday night, ‘Manchester Lindy’ host an improvers and beginners class followed by a dancing social accompanied by a live band or DJ. Whether you’ve danced before or have two left feet, the classes are easy to follow, fun and energetic and I should know, because I’ve been to one!
Every Tuesday @ 7pm (improvers) / 7:45pm (beginners) / 8:30pm (live band) | £5
The Refuge, Oxford St, Manchester, M60 7HA
Unfortunately, we do live in a day an age where wobbling your arse is considered sexy. Weird-I know- but nevertheless, the girls are BodyBarre in the Northern Quarter are here to help you master everyone’s go-to dance move. Their Twerking Masterclass takes place every Wednesday at 7.15pm and is designed to help you tone up, strengthen your muscles and improve your dancing skills. I attended this class a few times last year and truthfully, it’s harder than it sounds. I still can’t dance and definitely can’t twerk like Nikki Minaj but I did tone up my abs from laughing because exercise-aside, it really was great fun.
Wednesday @ 7.15pm | from £8
Bodybarre Studio, 2nd Floor, 35-37 Thomas Street, Northern Quarter, Manchester, M4 1NA
Not gonna’ lie; I had to Google this one because it almost didn’t seem real. Turns out it’s exactly what it says on the package- an exercise class where you use strength, flexibility and balance to mimic various animals’ movements. This includes lunges, crawls, jumps, hops and various balances that are designed to connect your mind and body in a unique way that you’ve never experienced from a class before. So if you’d like to improve your range of motion, burn some fat and clam your mind, BLOK Manchester offer this hour-long class.
Wednesday @ 5.35pm | from £15
BLOK, Ducie Street Warehouse, Manchester, M1 2TP
Yoga has risen to popularity in the last few years so it comes as no surprise that people are trying to mix it up a little. Cariad Yoga have done just that, by blending Vinyasa Flow Yoga with a groovy Reggae Rhythm. This fast-paced style of Yoga links movements together in a beautiful dance-like display of flexibility and creativity. Creator, Eirian, has created a fun, playful, mixed-level programme that builds strength, improves stretching and lifts the spirit; welcoming people from all walks of life. This weekly class will cost you less than a tenner and is located in the heart of Northern Quarter. Why do regular yoga when you could do Reggae yoga?
Thursday @ 6.30pm | from £9.97
2 nd Floor, 24 Lever Street, Manchester, M1 1DW
Why would you spend an hour on a treadmill hating every second of it when you could burn those calories pretending to be Christina Aguilera? Okay so none of us are that sexy and talented but attending Bodybarre’s sassy Burlesque Fit is definitely a step in the right direction. Attendees will first take part in a warm up and will then learn a sexy, burlesque dance including various props such as feather boas, ties and petals. You probably won’t be the next Dita Von Tease but exercise can be fun too, you know. It’s time to mix it up a little!
Mondays @ 6.30pm | from £10
Bodybarre Studio, 2 nd Floor, 35-37 Thomas Street, Northern Quarter, Manchester, M4
Aerial hoop performers make it look so bloody easy, don’t they? I can tell you now that it is a full body workout and probably one of the most challenging, and exhausting workouts you’ll ever have. But if you want to get fit, what could be better? Studio 25 in Northern Quarter have a massive selection of classes on offer but one of their most interesting has to aerial hoop. Some have described it as ‘yoga wrapped around a hoop’ whereas others have described it as an ‘art form’, either way, you’ll be absolutely exhausted but it’ll be worth the ride. Job at the circus, anyone?
Tuesdays @ 6pm & 7.30pm | Wednesday @ 7pm | £8
Studio 25, 25 Chruch Street, Manchester, M4 1PE
My first ever pole dancing class was at GFFdamian Dance Studio and wasn’t it one to remember. After my friend had drunkenly booked us onto a course, we were hesitant to say the least given the fact neither of us were particularly fit and were about as sexy as dead goldfish but miracles do happen, I can vouch for that. Damian’s Pole Fitness/ Pole Dancing/ Exotic Pole classes teach essential pole techniques to beginners and experts. Whether you’re looking to change careers or just want to build some self-confidence, pole dancing is one hell of a workout and is equally as addictive. This class will give you a much needed ego boost and will provide you with a full body workout that you’ll struggle to match in the gym. If I, a person with absolutely no upper body strength and zero sexy appeal, can swing around on a pole looking semi-decent, so can you.
Mondays @ 8:15pm | Tuesdays 7:10pm & 8:15pm | £10
GFFdamian Dance Studio, 109-113 Corporation Street, Manchester, M4 4DX