As previously mentioned, I have a free 1 month trial to ClassPass so I can try it out in Portland. Let’s look at the first four days of using ClassPass. Is it easy? Is it fun? Is it worth it?
I LOVE that I can search for classes by sorting and narrowing down all the details that may be relevant. If I know I’m going to be in NW Portland on Friday afternoon and need to find a class that starts between Noon and 3 PM…I can search for exactly that.
I can also look at a detailed description of each studio and see what they offer. If I really want to take the plunge and finally try out Bikram Yoga (I’ve been putting this off)…I can then view their class schedule, read bios about their instructors, and see any important notes like “Please bring a water bottle, towel, and arrive 15 minutes early.”
Most classes allow you to reserve 7 days in advance, no sooner. You’ll get an email to confirm that you have reserved your class and then one day in advance you’ll get an email to remind you about your class. If you cancel your class within 24 hours or if you miss class, it says you will be charged $20. I honestly don’t like that at all but I will say it keeps me motivated to get my booty there!!!
The First Four:
Skogg Gym – Strength
Tips: If you have wristbands, bring them for protection. As a first timer, I left with some big bruises! Friday afternoon classes are very lightly attended, i.e. cheap personal training! I was the only person there for the 3:30 PM class and I got coach Rey all to myself.
The gym is owned by Michael Skogg, a kettle bell master with a unique training methodology. Rey taught me their foundational kettle bells movements (I had to unlearn some CrossFit habits) and then I did 2 rounds of the strength workout, which involved movements like Floor to Snatch, Push Press, and things that required releasing your grip on the KB and flipping it around midair.
My Thoughts: While I was relatively disappointed that I didn’t get the full class energy and experience of a workout at Skogg (yet, I plan on going back), I loved their gym, their training style, and I could definitely see myself doing this more often.
The Art of Movement – Let’s Get Physical 80’s Aerobics
The studio is pretty tiny, but super clean and beautiful inside. Ameena was teaching that day and wore an awesome leotard with leg warmers and white sneakers. It was a light Saturday morning class, with four of us in attendance, but I can’t imagine the studio would fit more than 8 at a time, tops.
I haven’t done a class like this in a while and I had fun with it. All the dance-like aerobic steps reminded me of working out to Jane Fonda videos with my older sister so many years ago. At first I felt silly, but then I embraced the silly and danced through class.
We incorporated some weighted balls and (I hate but it’s good for me) core work. I had fun, left a bit sweaty, and got the sense that Ameena really knows her members and they have a good community going on.
Firebrand Sports – Bike + Barre
Tips: They’ve downsized their indoor bikes quite a bit and they’re kind of located in a back corner of the gym. Be ready to ride cozy! I was excited to take a class with one of the owners teaching. Sara is adorable and fun, but she doesn’t pull any punches on the bike portion of the workout. They have RealRyders which tilt left and right. That was kind of an odd feeling for me. Especially since this was my first time doing indoor cycling ever.
After 25 minutes of super sweating on the bikes, we had about 2 minutes to transition to the barre room. Clean the bikes, dab your sweat, and take off your shoes! Sara’s barre class was probably the most fun I’ve ever had doing any form of barre. Probably because it was a pretty fast moving, big movements, cardio-style class with fun music and lighting!
A-WOL Dance Collective – Aerial Yoga
Tips: There are 2 LOCATIONS for classes. The address listed on ClassPass is their main studio but if you want to do aerial yoga, like me, there is a different address on their website for their ‘annex’ location.
Kacy of SpriteFitness.com was the instructor. Her directions were very clear and helpful as I learned how to “dance” with one of the giant drapes that hung from the ceiling. Class started and ended being cocooned inside the folds of the fabric, which was both fun and relaxing. Using the fabric for balance, stabilization, and inversion, there was a lot we could do! Some were basically yoga poses with fabric wrapped around you just because, while others were definitely made possible because you could swing or lean on the fabric.
My Thoughts: I found this to be a perfect relaxing/stretching end to the first four days of Classpass! I found it mildly unpleasant to hang upside down for too long, but I suppose I could adapt. I’d do it again sometime.