The newest siong but shiok workouts!

Because we know you like a challenge once in a while (and jogging gets boring). Her World reviews Singapore’s latest calorie-crushing classes.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel

"Because we know you like a challenge once in a while (and jogging gets boring). Her World reviews Singapore’s latest calorie-crushing classes."

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GST (Gymnastics Strength Training) Handstand
What it is: Gymnastics class for adults.
Great for: Upper-body strength conditioning and flexibility.
Length: One hour

“I volunteered to review this class because I can do a wall handstand easily – or so I thought. Prior to the session, Lay Yong, Bodytree co-founder and trainer, gauged my flexibility and strength by making me do some simple plank exercises. To my surprise, I was told that I had neither the flexibility nor the strength required to join the class – I suspect an old wrist injury might have had something to do with it. I found it hard to follow Lay Yong’s instructions to do a plank, while curling my fingers upward as far as possible. 

So while the rest of the class performed challenging moves with the gym equipment, I stuck to stretches and conditioning moves (like bar hangs) for the first 15 minutes. I gradually progressed to a pike handstand, aided by a wooden block and several gym mats. 

I rejoiced internally when I finally pulled off  a wall handstand, only to be told that I was distributing my weight wrongly, which could result in a broken wrist (or two). Apparently, the trick to doing a proper handstand is to push yourself towards the ceiling by engaging your back muscles. I spent the rest of the session alternating between stretches and wall handstands.

The aches came two days later in muscles I never knew existed. On the bright side, the pain in my wrists was alleviated thanks to all the stretching. I’d recommend this class to my super-fit friends who are hardcore yogis or pilates practitioners.” – Evon Chng, fashion stylist 

Available at Bodytree GST, #01-01, 100 Amoy Street. For membership information, e-mail

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Rip Circuit
What it is: Circuit training with the TRX Rip Trainer (a pole attached to a resistance cord). This baby lets you perform rotational moves at varying degrees of resistance.
Great for: Strength endurance, core strength and rotational strength.
Length: One hour

“I consider myself to be in pretty good shape – I work out at least four times a week and can execute push-ups (guy-style!) just fine. So imagine my surprise – and embarrassment – when I found myself completely wiped out after this. 

We did three sets of exercises, twice, at four stations. These stations comprised an agility ladder, a vibrating platform, the TRX Rip Trainer and a Vipr (a cylindrical body weight that looks a little like a giant pipe). The exercises were simple body-weight moves like push-ups and plank walks, but with the equipment thrown in, I was stretched to the limit. Imagine doing inclined push-ups on a vibrating platform, followed by a jump squat onto said platform. Killer! 

That said, I had a ball of a time. This class is definitely not for beginners, but will suit fitness enthusiasts who want to up their game and don’t mind looking like a hot mess at the end. My entire body ached for the next two days, but it was worth it!” – Tan Min Yan, lifestyle editor

Available at Pure Fitness Asia Square, Level 6 Asia Square Tower 1, 8 Marina View (tel: 6100-2233). Membership packages range from one month to 24 months. 

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Aerial Hoop
What it is: Acrobatics around and on a suspended hoop.
Great for: Upper-body strength conditioning and flexibility.
Length: One hour

“If you’ve seen Cirque du Soleil, you’ll understand my apprehension about trying an aerial hoop class. For the uninitiated, the class involves performing a choreographed routine on, and around, a hoop suspended from the ceiling – a beautiful and awe-inspiring thing to observe. 

I warmed up with simple exercises like hip rotations, floor stretches, and crunches. Then I started with the basics, like learning how to mount the hoop and distribute my weight evenly. I’m proud to say that I managed to complete four basic poses by the end of the lesson, including Man in the Moon and the Stag (pictured below). 

Expect to wake up the next day with sore muscles. My shoulders, arms and lower back ached the most, and I had bruises and abrasions on my legs. Great class if you’re looking to increase your upper-body strength and improve your flexibility, though you will need a decent level of fitness.” – Charmaine Lee, beauty writer

Classes are taught by Acro Polates at Gymkraft, 100 Guillemard Road. One course consists of eight weekly classes and is priced at $205. Private lessons are also available at Acro Polates’ studio at #02-29 Waterloo Centre (tel: 6334-2382). 

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Webarre Signature Multi-level
What it is: Ballet class, pilates, yoga and core training combined into one massive workout.
Great for: Cardio and core strength.
Length: One hour

“I started with a 10-minute stretching session, doing plies (a ballet term for moves involving bending your knees) and releves (standing on the balls of your feet). My hamstrings and quads quickly cramped up. The class progressed to barre routines with basic ballet moves like curtseys and passes. I struggled to remember the sequences, and ended up looking less like Natalie Portman in Black Swan, and more like a jerky marionette. My legs trembled from a lack of strength. 

The killer segment was the core workout in the second half of the class – it was essentially a high-intensity interval training (HIIT) session comprising burpees, army crawl push-ups, sit-ups and narrow bridge lifts. I found myself slumped on the floor by the fourth set – we had to do eight sets in total.  

By the end of the class, I could feel the burn in my core muscles. I didn’t feel any pain in my legs – only because I couldn’t feel them anymore. My body too k four days to recover. 

If you’re an avid runner like me and have little core strength, give this class a shot. If you’re a couch potato, try the Webarre Fundamentals class, where ballet terms are simplified and you move at a slower pace.”– Aretha Loh, features writer

Available at Webarre, Level 3, 86B Tanjong Pagar Road (tel: 6221-5539). Prices start from $49 for a seven-day pass (one-time purchase only) and $330 for a 10-class pack (valid for four months).

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What it is: A rebounder class.
Great for: A heart-pumping cardio workout.
Length: One hour

“I love trampoline parks, so I was really excited about this. You get to work your core and lower-body muscles without putting strain on your joints, which is great. Plus, I was told this one-hour session can reportedly burn up to 900 calories. 

That said, U-Bound isn’t just about bouncing on a trampoline. I had to do kicks, lunges, squats and crunches – while jumping – and even had to sprint on the spot on the trampoline. Trust me, it’s harder than it sounds! I felt a strain in my thighs and lower calves after 20 minutes. 

The good news is that by the end of the class, I felt more energised than exhausted. It was not as intense as a HIIT workout, and I didn’t ache as much the next day. My joints felt okay too, despite all the jumping. 

Verdict: It’s a fun, upbeat and super-entertaining class. It’s also great cardio for those who hate running.” – Carina Koh, beauty writer

Available at True Fitness, #03-318 to 323, Suntec City Mall (tel: 6820-9000). Membership packages are priced from $85 a month.

Here’s a round-up of our favourite workout gear.
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Nike Zoned Sculpt Tights, $209, available at selected Nike stores.

Goodbye stuff y, constrictive tights that make lunges and squats so tough. The soft, light Dri-fit fabric allows your pins to “breathe” and move freely (it’s nearly seamless) while compressing your quadriceps and glutes. The high waistband gives additional core support.

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Adidas Pureboost X, $169, available in all Adidas stores.
Pureboost’s slim frame doesn’t compromise on support, thanks to comfy foam capsules that provide added bounce (it feels like you’re jogging on clouds). The floating arch that wraps around makes your feet look smaller!

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Puma Yogini Live Bra, $69, available at Puma Ion Orchard and Vivocity
Less is more when you need to pull off  sun salutations and bows. This low-cut sports bra provides enough chest support and freedom to move about with its thin straps and open back. Our favourite is the blue and cyan one.