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5 Weird Workouts

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by Bastion Harrison (subscribe)
Freelance writer and poet from London; if you would like to read my poetry, please check out my book, 'Poems on the Page', available from
Published January 17th 2013
From childhood games to medieval torture
We all want to be fit and healthy, but it can be hard to find the motivation to do the exercise. Gyms are expensive to join, and sometimes the thought of mindlessly jogging on a treadmill or lifting weights can be terribly off putting. Some get a kick out of it, but most of us find find it a tedious chore, and give up in the end. What we all need is something fun to keep us interested - to make us want to go back for more. So why not try something different this year?

1. Hula-Hoop

Hula-hoops were the in thing when I was at school; everyone in the playground was after one. I used to be a hula-hoop master in the playground, spinning them round my waist, arms, legs, and neck when the teachers weren't looking (for some reason they thought we'd choke ourselves). We would have contests to see who could hula the most hoops, or pass them on to one another mid spin. Back then it was all a child's game, but recently it has become a new exercising fad. These retro pelvic thrusts can burn a hundred calories in ten minutes, helping to get rid of those love handles and giving you an extreme cardio-vascular workout. Hoops Whirled do beginners classes at Hornsey Parish Church Hall on Wednesdays between 7.30pm-8.30pm, for 9.50 per session, or 48 for a six week course. You can even order your own customised hula-hoop.

2. Kangaroo Jumping

Do your kids jump about like kangaroos? Well now it is your turn. Gymbox provides specially designed shoes called Kangaroo Jumps that will get you bouncing up and down like Skippy. They will double your calorie burn, but are low impact footwear so do no damage to the feet, legs, or knee joints. Classes are on Tuesdays at 7pm, and costs 58 a month.

3. Bell Ringing

Give your arms a workout at St. James Church. It's like weight lifting only more fun, and you get to be musical at the same time. The classes are on Tuesdays between 7.30pm-9.30pm, and are free to attend.

4. A-Grow-Bics

If you're a shorty like me, then Gymbox's A-Grow-Bics classes are the thing for you. Think aerobics merged with the medieval rack. Sounds painful, but if you don't grow an inch or two, you'll get your money back. 200 for a six week course.

5. Anti-Gravity Yoga

anti-gravity yoga, london dance academy

When you think about swinging in a hammock, thoughts of snoozing in the garden on a lazy summer's afternoon come to mind, but when it comes to anti-gravity yoga you'll be getting a swinging workout. It will build your core muscles and give you a sense of weightlessness. Classes are at the London Dance Academy on Wednesdays at 8.30pm and cost 25.
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Why? Have a fun workout
When: Evenings
Where: Around London
Cost: Free - 200
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