By Svetlana Gavrikova
I arrive at SmartFit at 11:32….2 minutes after the class has started. But it’s excusable, since I’m attending the class this time, not teaching it. Phew, made it!
Trainers, the usual sports attire are on, though today I am attending a different kind of class at SmartFit – not the usual flowy, dreamy, clench-your-teeth-for-stability-and balance kind of class. No. Today we’re doing the happy, peppy, circuit training-meets-Pilates workout. Enter Cable Core Control.
The name sounds deceivingly like a 1930s German torture method, though one couldn’t have been further from the truth. Created by a Russian (our very own Marina Gavrikova), Cable Core is the 1stin the world program that combines the strength and agility elements of functional training, cardio and endurance benefits of the circuit training and posture, core and rehabilitative exercises of the Pilates method using Kinetic Cube, a unique cable-and-weights exercise block construction that the workout is centered around.
After a brief warm up, all four of us are positioned at the four out of eight exercise stations of the Kinetic Cube, each equipped with its own digital TV screen. You do your exercise, repeat after the video on the screen, and in 60 seconds you’re done. Time to change a station!
We go about our 1stcircuit of eight huffing and puffing, trying hard to have our movements to be in tune with the music, but generally feeling fit and active: we can do this. The movements are challenging – we are pulling or pushing a weighted cable while maintaining a squat, or lunging with a twist, or rotating our bodies while lifting our arms overhead – all requiring coordination, core and total body strength; yet, doing this in a group is surprisingly fun. The music is cheery, others are in the same hard working boat as you are and you cannot just stop and let them down. Or you can, and that competitive little streak in you (who am I kidding, it’s not that small of a factor) propels you forward and here you are, doing better than you though you could!
The circuit is over and we are at our 1st“real” break: 1 minute for water! We glance at each other understandingly, greedily drink our water and start the set number 2. This feels good. Really good. Until Marina says that we are at 1/3rdof our class. It was the 1stround of 3. Ok. Brace yourself, everyone!
The second circuit proves to be challenging. Burdened by the knowledge that we are not even half way through, we start recognizing our shaking arms, unstable legs, unbalanced selves. Sometimes, ignorance is truly a blissJ
Yet, the ladies on the screens are cheery (and yes, I am one of them!), Marina keeps correcting our postures and insuring we are moving right, the music doesn’t stop and everyone continues.
By the end of the second round and the beginning of the third, we enter what I like to call ‘’the 7thgear”: our brains understood that the show must go on and that none of the other participants are stopping and so mustn’t you. And once we stop fighting it, the legs, arms and brains oblige and we go on about performing already familiar exercises, once in a while catching a sympathetic glance or a smile from a partner in pain.
And…the active part of the workout is done. The light, calm, soothing music is on and Marina gathers us in the front of the room for some stretching. I love the new-found calm. The breeze of the fan feels nothing short of heavenly and the light yet effective flexibility exercises are just right for my buzzing muscles.
In a short while, the class is over yet we take a while to move from our mats, laughing and sharing our impressions with each other. The accomplishment and endorphins make us proud.