New YorkPilates, Bootcamp, HIIT
Who hasn’t watched Center Stage and wished your parents kept you in ballet past the age of 3? ChaiseFitness’s Ballet Bungee class will bring out the inner ballerina you might not have known existed – with all the feels of Jody Sawyer dancing in her red leotard glory.
Substituting ballet slippers for sneakers and using bungees suspended from the ceiling, this is not your average ballet class. With far more ballet-inspired footwork and moves than a barre class, Ballet Bungee is closer to a graceful sweaty bootcamp that may leave you wishing you owned a tutu.
Upon entering the studio, you’ll see mirrored walls and overhead bungees marking the respective spots to choose from for class. The instructor, Rachel Piskin, didn’t waste much time after helping to adjust the bungees to the right height for attendees. She jumped right in, delivering high energy directions filled with dance vocabulary that would be foreign to anyone without previous dance experience. Though with Rachel standing front and center in the room and demonstrating each move along the way, the potential language barrier didn’t seem to cause any issues. Music in the classroom is bumping but the focus is much more on keeping up with the instructions and proper form than dancing to the rhythm.
The class had five sections: 1. Warmup; 2. Similar ballet-inspired section of sculpting and toning; 3. Cardio section that kicked things into high gear; 4. Floor abs section; and 5. Stretch and cool down. The class was pretty fast-paced and used every second of time, leaving any water recovery breaks up to us for the taking. With both hands in the handles of the bungees hanging overhead, you can almost immediately feel your arms strengthening and sculpting. The resistance from the bungees is also key in activating your core and balancing in the more challenging moves. This really helps you to feel like your best ballerina self when pulsing and holding that arabesque. Between the bungees and various plies, squats, kicks, and jumps, you’ll feel every muscle working in the best way.
Rachel Piskin, a former ballet dancer and one of the founders of ChaiseFitness, is clearly a pro. She was friendly, helpful and ready to kick our ass. Her 12:00pm class on a Saturday had almost every bungee taken, always a good sign. With a full class of people, she was still making her way around the room giving hands-on adjustments. Based on her attentiveness and ability to make you realllyyy feel like you’ve earned that Saturday Brunch, we would definitely recommend her class for all levels.
The Flatiron Chaise location has two studios. Both are small and sleek but the 3rd floor city walk-up feel is definitely not lost (although there was an artsy painted elevator). Unlike other Chaise studios we’ve visited, the lights were never dimmed and the studio let in a lot of light. Outside of the classroom, there are two curtained stalls you can change in, a small wall of lock-free lockers, an open sink near the lockers and one bathroom. Not the ideal situation to get ready in if you’re heading straight to work or to meet people directly after. While the options are there if necessary, we would recommend reserving this class with enough time to go home before your next activity.
40 E 23rd St, New York, NY 10010 Flatiron Pilates $$$$
Flatiron Pilates, Bootcamp, HIIT $$$$
40 E 23rd St, New York, NY 10010
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