what the what is a TRX? (and other new workout trends)

by Cara Oslager

Let’s talk about those oddly named gym classes that you have to go home and google.  Let’s discuss that even as a personal trainer, I need to look up new fitness trends clients mention ALL OF THE TIME.  Here are a few that you may be unsure of and a little description of what to expect and what I recommend:


TRX: These suspension trainers are great because they can be used pretty much anywhere.  Don’t let their minimalistic look throw you off, originally used and invented by the Marines, I’m telling you- they are a lot harder than they look!  Your instructor will have you at all different angles, even putting your feet up in those little loops.  A class will usually cover your full body so it would be great for someone looking to challenge themselves.  There are always modifications so don’t be afraid to head to this class at any fitness level.

Tabata:  One of my personal faves!  I’ve taught and been going to these classes when I can for the past few months and it really makes you work.  The class runs in a sort of cycle, in an hour, you may get in about 10 tabatas (8 cycles consisting of 20 seconds of work with 10 second breaks in between).  Confused yet?  Once again, your instructor will most likely make the class a full body workout, switching from weight focused exercises, to cardio focused exercises.  You may even get on the treadmill for tabata sprints if you are lucky! 😉

Warrior Ropes: SO MANY ROPES!  So this class uses ropes (think ropes that you used to climb up for gym class…eek!) of many different weights anchored to either a bar or weight.  Since the ropes tend to focus on upper body and core, a class that uses them is sure to kick your butt!

Hula Hoop Dance:  Alicia got me into hula hoop dance.  A few weeks ago, we went to a class together and let me say it was so, so fun!  This is a class where you will constantly be asking “Am I doing it?” and “Does this look cool?” as you attempt to move as one with your hoop!  There are hoops of all different weights and tricks that you would have never imagined.  I would not recommend this class as a workout per say but as more of a freeing, flowing experience using your body.  You definitely use your core but not enough to be dripping with sweat.


Paddleboard: What a lovely way to spend part of your day and get a workout in!  Paddleboarding is such a blast.  In a paddle class, you will usually be out on the bay or a lake, using your core and upper body to move your way through the water and using your lower body for stability and balance.  This class incorporates an almost meditative experience while you enjoy nature and tone your upper body and core.  If you live locally, be sure to check out Adventure Paddleboard!


Metabolic Effect: An awesome, hardcore, 30 minute workout.  This exercise session is rest based- meaning you reach your own intensity necessary to trigger fat- burning.  ME uses full body exercises to release specific hormones to create an after-burn effect.  You push yourself to your limit, rest, then start right back from where you left off.  This class is so great.  I love the support given throughout the classes as well as how you feel once you leave (you may even continue to burn calories up to two days after class!).  If you can find this class near you, I suggest trying it out!  Google a video- 30 minutes will feel like forever.

Other classes that I would like to try: 


Dance Street Lab

Bar Method


Have you tried anything fitness-wise that seemed new or cool lately?  If so, please share!  It’s so important to change up your workouts and try new things so these classes are great to keep in mind.

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