Long time no chat!
Today I wanted to share with you a really cool class I took at Equinox. Equinox graciously invited me back in to take another class and review it on the blog. I’ve visited the top of the line health and wellness club twice before, and I am always impressed, so I was really looking forward to going back.
My contact at Equinox’s marketing group invited me in to try a new class called RX series. I’ve recently been adding barre classes to my workout regimen, and I’ve been left with aching muscles and tension in the neck and upper back. As soon as I read the description below, I knew this class would be perfect for me.
“To reach your maximum potential, Equinox Boston introduces RX Series which prescribes the 3 “M”s – massage, mobilization and maximizing performance to revitalize the body beginning October 2013.
Designed by the Equinox Group Fitness team and Jill Miller, co-founder of Tune Up Fitness Worldwide and creator of Yoga Tune Up ®, this new 30-45-minute group fitness class combines self-myofascial massage, range-of-motion stretches and breath strategy to recharge and reset the system for your highest performance yet. RX Series will benefit any athlete by adding restoration and recovery moves into their workout routine.
“RX Series strives to educate about the importance of self-care and gives students the tools to stay injury-free through guided self-massage sequences,” says Miller. “The class demonstrates how performance is enhanced by regeneration while introducing breath, mindset and meditation.”
This unique class using Yoga Tune Up® Therapy Balls, yoga blocks and stretch straps helps to keep joints mobile and tissues supple so the body lasts longer and remains pain-free. RX Series can be a supplement to anyone with an overworked or unconditioned body as it addresses aches, pain, tension and stress. RX Series serves as a preparation for workouts or an active recovery solution following your workout.
RX Series is perfect for anyone short-on-time and provides an all-over body recharge for energy and balance, while complementing any existing exercise routine.”
Last Sunday morning, I headed in to Equinox to take the class. I was surprised to see that the class was only 30 minutes, but thankfully there was a yoga class right after so I stayed for that as well. The two classes complimented each other very well! I put my stuff in a locker, and entered the golden dome shaped room where the classes are held. I was surprised to see a friendly face; the class was taught by Pat Donaher, who is an acro yoga teacher as well. He assisted the acro yoga class I dragged CJ to back in May. I love the small yoga community in Boston!
Anyways, once I entered the room, I set up a mat (equinox uses red jade yoga mats) and was handed a pair of balls. The teacher had us start out by rolling our feet on the ball. The balls are meant to release tension, soften muscles, and ease pain. I could feel things loosening up in my feet within the first few minutes. I even noticed it helped my yogi toes spread wider, which is something I’ve been working on. Yes, I do have a life.
Then we moved into “ardha savasana” which is a position reclined on the back with the feet planted and the knees bent. We placed the balls on either side of the spine right where the neck and the shoulders meet (like the picture below). We did some arm movements and then rolled the balls around a little. It was super intense, but I could tell I’d feel better afterwards. The balls are about the size of racquetballs, and I think they are made of hard foam. They are not as squeezable as stress balls, but they do have a little give. One important point was not to allow the balls to cross the spine. You are supposed to keep one ball on either side of the spine, and from there you can roll up or down.
We worked our way down the back. The middle of my back was the most intense point for me. I often get pain here if I am standing or slouching a lot during the day. It felt amazing to roll out the tension and make way for smoother muscles.
After the back, we worked out the glutes, and then moved to the most painful point, the IT band. We placed the balls on either side of the IT band and slowly rolled up and down. I don’t know why the girl in the picture below is smiling, because this is no walk in the park!
We were finished in 30 minutes, and I felt a sense of release. It was great! I mentioned that I am into barre classes, and I find those incredibly painful, but this is a whole different type of pain. Its the type of pain that makes you want to go back and try it again, it’s addicting! After class, and even the next day at work, I kept thinking about the great release I got from the therapy balls on my IT band. I googled them and found out a set of balls is only $12. I could barely get my debit card out fast enough to order them! I wish I could attend the RX series on a regular basis so I would know if I was getting into the right spots. For now, I’ll just roll around on them at home until it hurts.
I can’t recommend this class, and these therapy balls enough! I have a thera roll foam roller, but this works way better for getting into the muscles and fascial tissue deeper. It might be the best $12 I’ve ever spent.