The #MiniMondayReview is a bite-sized, emoji-based fitness class review featured on our Instagram.
On the Detox|Retox blog we have a bit more room to give you the low down on the who/what/wear too.
This week = FitBEAT, an empowering and uplifting dance class in the dark that left us sweating and smiling in equal measure (and feeling like Beyonce for days afterwards).
Like Zumba but much cooler, and perfect for anyone who loves dance exercise but finds some classes a bit cringe. That's how At Your Beat (AYB) founder/choreographer Joelle D'Fontaine describes his FitBEAT class.
And the man is right, because we did actually feel almost cool and zero cringe dancing in the dark to tracks like Formation and Vogue. And that's without any gin.
Designed for dance beginners (more advanced dancers should try one of the UrbanBEAT, StrutBEAT or VideoBEAT classes) there is no complex choreography, or even counting of steps, and instead classes focus on copying the instructor's simple sequences in the mirror.
Half an hour of fat-blasting cardio is followed by 15 minutes of toning (including a surprisingly intimate abs session) and you can expect to burn around 500 calories per session.
Our Monday night class consisted of mostly 20 and 30somethings, and every body shape and fitness level going.
Most people there were definitely NOT dancers when the class began but we all left feeling like queens of the D-floor thanks to Joelle's inclusive style and easy-to-follow shoulder rolls. "Leave Miss Inhibition at the door... you won't want to pick her up when you leave," he says.
NB This is not the place to pull - there was one man for around 25 women in the group - but the soaring post-class confidence levels would work wonders on a night out.
THE MINI REVIEW
FITNESS LEVEL? 3/5 💪 💪 💪
Joelle says that rhythm is more important than fitness in his classes, but you will hardly stop for the thirty minute dance section and the abs workout at the end is a toughie.
WILL YOU SWEAT? 3/5 💦 💦 💦
Yes. Wear layers.
STUDIO STYLE? 2/5 💋 💋
The Monday class is held at Sylvia Young which is pure dance school vibes so don't expect designer showers or a smoothie bar (but this is reflected in a great value £10 ticket).
MUSIC: 5/5💃🏼 💃🏼 💃🏼 💃🏼 💃🏼
Infectious throwback dance hits with a few slower, sexier numbers mixed in at just the right time to give you a bit of a breather.
FRIENDLY OR FIERCE? FRIENDLY 😈
Joelle is WAY friendlier than his fabulous name or terrifying Instagram feed suggests and understands that we're not all built for slut drops: "Your job is just to turn up. You've done the hard bit now it's my job to make you love it," he says.
and what to WEAR?
- Anything goes here from American football jerseys to leggings and leotards. Long and loose is good (there's not generally much skin on show, which is a relief if you're a bit body conscious)
- Layers that can be removed as you go (you're going to get HOT)
- A sports bra for all that bouncing
- Clean/indoor trainers
- Your specs - it gets pretty dark in there