Friday, November 11, 2016

The RVA Fit Gal's Guide to Fighting Gravity

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How cool is this installment of the Fit Gal's Guide?? I mentioned Fighting Gravity Fitness when I featured the owner, Audrey, a couple weeks ago. I've posted a couple times on my personal instagram about the classes I've taken, and I've been in and out of the studio for almost a month now. As I leave work, people ask if I'm heading to go "hang upside down" for my workout. 

Well - yeah. Hanging upside down releases endorphins, makes you a little bit taller, and fills capillaries in your face that improve your complexion - not to mention, those hammocks can get you deeper into stretches and aid in "normal" workout routines. I truly had a blast at Fighting Gravity - the instructors encourage laughter, communication, and trying new things, PLUS they're always down to get that shot for Instagram. All jokes aside, I had a great talk with Audrey on Thursday about how growth can't happen inside one's comfort zone. You never know what your true purpose is going to be, and you won't know if you're settling or not until you step out of that bubble and find out for yourself. Wise words from a woman who has been through a lot and found a career doing something she adores. And can wear yoga pants to. Win-win in my book.

Other things to note - the hammocks can hold over 1,000 lbs (!!) and one time a baby elephant. Also, classes will be cancelled in Studio B if there aren't enough participants, so be sure to check the schedule before heading into the studio.

Classes I Tried (full schedule HERE):

  • AntiGravity FUNdamentals 1 - I took this class a couple times to get a feel for the hammocks and learn some basic moves. It's required at FGF to take FUNdamentals 1-3 times before progressing to more specialized classes - and I can see why, because the first time going upside down is a feeling of completely letting go. It's super lighthearted and fun, and you get to do super cool stuff that looks insane but actually isn't as challenging as you'd think. 
  • AntiGravity AirBarre - This class took some traditional barre practices (think pulsing, small movements) and made everything a little more fluid and graceful through the use of the hammocks. The hammocks were a tool for me to jump higher, stretch further, and lean on for stability in a way that truly engaged my core. Highly recommend for anyone who likes barre classes and especially if you enjoy dance.
  • AntiGravity Sculpt and Tone - This class is challenging, but fun (I was pretty sore the next day!). Think a sculpt-type workout combining strength, flexibility, and cardio, but using the hammocks as a tool. Like the AirBarre class, the hammocks proved to be an amazing tool in helping me engage my core and stretch muscles further than I normally could. Plus, warming up for a class by hanging upside down is totally fine with me.
  • Barre Tone - Fighting Gravity Fitness has two studios. One is designated for AntiGravity classes, and one offers a really wide variety of "normal" fitness options like barre, yoga, zumba, and much more. I tried two barre classes with two different instructors, and enjoyed both. The class sizes were small and I felt like I was able to challenge myself to an appropriate ability without wondering if I was going to walk out looking like a drowned rat. If you are newish to barre (which is a recent love of mine) I would absolutely recommend starting out at FGF because of these small class sizes and the ability to communicate with the instructor.


Here we are again. Money. The breakdown of prices at FGF is as follows:
  • Drop in - 
    • Studio A (AntiGravity) $24
    • Studio B (other classes) $18 
  • 5 Class Pass - $95 (this breaks down to $19/class)
  • 10 Class Pass - $185 (breaks down to $18.50/class)
  • New Student Unlimited Month - $75 (definitely less than you spend at Target each month)
  • One Month Unlimited - $110
  • 12-month Annual Membership - $99/month
FGF also offers personal training.
 Check their website for more info! 

What Do I Wear?!

For classes on the AntiGravity side, you are required to wear a top with either short or long sleeves, no tank tops. The reasoning behind this is that in certain poses, the hammock can feel uncomfortable against your armpits if you don't have sleeves on. It's also important to wear shirts that don't have zippers or other hardware so that they don't catch on the hammock while you're doing flips and other cool stuff. I'd also recommend wearing leggings. I've linked some athletic wear below that fits the bill, take a look!

It's impossible not to have fun with Audrey at Fighting Gravity. This isn't a place that you should be intimidated to attend by yourself or for the first time - the atmosphere is welcoming and easygoing, and there are FUNdamentals classes for a reason! I highly recommend trying a drop-in at Studio A when you have the chance - it makes for a fun evening, and a great Instagram photo too ;)

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