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I wanted to try reformer Pilates for 3 reasons: Minimal sweating so I could do it before work without having to wash my hair after class, everyone I know who does it has incredible abs and the class itself looked like it was just a bunch of people chilling in a bed while pulling some ropes. So when I realized that there was a reformer Pilates studio right in front of my favorite Venezuelan restaurant which is also 3 blocks away from my apartment I thought to myself: Aha! This is where I’ll swipe my reformer V-Card.
Chelsea Movements is located in the basement of a nondescript building on 18th street. But once you enter it you realize that they actually have a HUGE studio down there. It doesn’t have a particularly catchy color scheme, the most outstanding thing about it would probably be the exposed brick wall. The studio has super calm vibe, no music which sometimes combined with the super chill vibe made me very sleepy during class.
The studio is not a trendy one at all, its clientele consists of a lot of older people who go there for private sessions and people who live around the neighborhood. But realistically speaking, if you are going to get an amazing workout who cares if celebrities and beautiful people are taking class with you. You do see the occasional Lululemonite but that also has to do with the fact that the studio is in the heart of Chelsea.
The staff is super knowledgeable and most of them have been teaching Pilates for over a decade. My favorite instructor is Benjamin Oyzon who is a former dancer/burner who now teaches pilates while simultaneously sharing Burning Man and other festival stories. That might actually be the reason why I like taking his class so much. They only have 5 reformers so even if you take a group class it feels like a private because the instructor gives you a lot of personal attention. I only took reformer classes but they also offer Gyrotonic, Tower and Cadillac classes. In the studio they also have a lot of props (bumpy balls, blocks, rings, resistance bands, etc.) to help you position and align yourself for different movements.
Overall I was very satisfied with my experience at Chelsea Movements. I took about 15 classes in the studio and definitely saw improvement in my body and posture. The no sweat factor was also a big motivator to take more class and I can confidently say that this is studio offers unpretentious Pilates, which in New York City is very rare. Most people at the studio are regulars which I think says a lot about the studio itself. I also learned that reformer is not just laying on a bed chilling and pulling a bunch of ropes, the class is HARD and the fact that you don’t sweat doesn’t mean you won’t sweat your ass (or abs?) off.
The thing about social media is that it allows people not only to glorify their lives, but has also allowed bullies to gain a power they did not have when they actually had to face the person they were bullying. There have been many cases of kids who have had their self-esteems shattered and have taken extreme measures such as suicide because of online bullying. You see when a bully bullies you in person it is an isolated incident that is only witnessed but a small amount of people. Give this bully internet access and his bullying can reach millions. What is even worse is that anything published in the internet lives on forever and ever.
A group of people who are constantly exposed to cyber bullying are celebrities. While being famous generally implies that your privacy can and will be violated often, that does not give insecure people with laptops, smartphones and Instagram accounts the right to post offensive shit left and right. Celebrity trainer Casey Ho, who’s youtube channel Blogilates who now counts with over two million subscribers decided to do a video in response to all the bullying she has had to endure in the past. This is what would happen if we actually paid attention to the ill words of these cowards:
Always remember: Your haters actually hate themselves.
A little less than a moth ago we got to witness what was an hour-long infomercial of lingerie, perfect physiques and Taylor Swift (drool) in the 2014 Victoria’s Secret fashion show. And while you my feel like these angels are the only girls on this planet capable of achieving a flawless look, it turns out that their appearance goes way beyond just winning the genetic lottery. These angels train for the show the same way an athlete trains for the Olympics, and prepare for this occasion months in advance.
If the Victoria’s Secret fashion show left you feeling like you need to
skip the cupcakes step your fitness game up, then fear not. Here at Foreign Concept we have created a roundup of the Angel’s workouts of choice, and the fitness gurus behind these perfectly sculpted bodies. And with resolution season just around the corner, instead of making the clichéd “I need to lose weight” resolution (come on! We are all guilty of that one) which seems vague and difficult to attain because its so unspecific, we should all aspire to #trainlikeanangel in 2015.
So here is what it takes to obtain an Angel-status body:
Ballet Training: Ever since she trained Natalie Portman for Black Swan, Mary Helen Bowers has gained a cult like following among Victoria’s Secret Angels. Her ballet inspired moves help create the long and lean muscles and those enviable abs. Among her Angel following we can find: Miranda Kerr, Doutzen Kroes, Romee Strijd, Isabeli Fontana and Lily Aldridge.
Boxing: It may sound like an oxymoron that the world’s most delicate Angels can beat pretty much anyone in a street fight, but boxing is the sport of choice for Angels like Adriana Lima who has been boxing with trainer Michael Olajide Jr. for the past 10 years. Other model boxers include: Gigi Hadid, Sara Sampaio, Cara Delevingne, Elsa Hosk, Maryna Linchuk and Constance Jablonski. Their boxing gyms of choice include: Aerospace High Performance Center, Mendez Boxing and the Insta-famous Gotham Gym.
Soul-Cycle: There are many brands of indoor cycling studios, but none with the model following that Soul-Cycle has. On any given day you may bump into Angels like Alessandra Ambrosio, Karlie Kloss and Lily Aldrigde in their peaceful yet heart-pumping classes. Because we all feel a little more motivated to turn up the resistance in our bikes when we have an Angel pedaling next to us.
Body-Sculpting: Those incredibly toned limbs and Victoria’s Secret abs are due to resistance training and body sculpting exercises with weights. While there are many personal trainers out there who can whip your body into shape, the Angel’s secret weapon is trainer Justin Gelband. What’s even more awesome is that he recently opened a studio in the Bowery where commoners like us can go and benefit from the Angel whisperer’s techniques. His model following includes: Karlie Kloss who constantly instagrams pictures of herself in Gelband’s studio, Lily Aldridge, Candice Swanpoel, Behati Prinsloo and Lily Aldridge.
Running: It may sound like the most over simplified way of training but the Angels attribute their tiny frames to running since it is the highest calorie-burning workout and doesn’t create bulk. Among the angel runners we can find: Gigi Hadid, Izabel Goulart (well she practices pretty much every discipline under the sun) Mirand Kerr and Heidi Klum. The best part about running is that the only fancy equipment you’ll need is running shoes and a good attitude and the second one is generally free.
In case you need some extra motivation to start training like an Angel, here is a slideshow of your favorite girls breaking a sweat.