In September when I was trying out the studio Living Fitness in Newport Coast, I was introduced to a new class called Piloxing. Just as it sounds, it’s combination of Pilates & Boxing with a high intensity cardio workout from kick boxing mixed with body sculpting of Pilates. Not only does it combine the two workouts, it adds an element of dance which spices up the fun and makes you smile.
During the workout you wear weighted gloves (1/2 pound), which give you a little more resistance and challenge. It may not seem like a lot of weight but once you get to the tricep burners you’ll want to toss them. The warm-up is pretty basic with light shoulder shrugs, hip circles, small squats and stretches to increase your core temp and loosen those muscles.
The main part of the workout starts with a series of punches with jabs, crosses, hooks and uppercuts, all do the beat of the music and in a powerful boxer stance. Then you add cardio into the mix with 2 jabs to one corner of the room, pick up the front knee and pivot to the other corner of the room and do 2 jabs. It’s slow at first and then you pick up the pace as if you were doing jumping jacks, knee lifts and punching.
One of the most challenging sections is the leg work when you have to stay in a low squat and duck side to side as if you were dodging a punch above you. My legs were burning and sweat was dripping off my chin. Then you move on to speed bag punches. Making your fists go round and round each other in tiny circles as fast as you can with 1/2 pound gloves isn’t easy after 2 minutes. It’s especially hard when you have to lift your hands above your shoulders. And then you reverse the direction of the circles! Whew! More sweat dripping.
After the main heart pumping work you move on to more toning exercises with triceps, biceps, shoulder presses and leg lifts. Like I said earlier, the gloves get really heavy during the tricep burners. Hinging at the hips with knees bent, you stretch your arms straight back just above the hips and palms facing inward.
You pump the arms towards each other to the beat of the music, then extend one leg out (like in the photo), then lift the leg with the pumps to the front and then do it all over again on the other leg. After the tricep work, you move on to shoulder presses and bicep curls, all while lifting a leg to the side or front. Takes some coordination for sure.
Also included in the workout are balance exercises to work the stabilizer muscles and core. The final section of the workout is on the mat and you do tricep pushups (major burning!), hip raises, glute work and Pilates ab exercises.
Overall Summary: Incredibly fun workout that gets your heart rate up, tones the muscles, strengthens your core and makes you want to smile. You can make this workout as intense as you want it to be or it can be turned down to a beginners level, but does have a lot of cardio so your heart needs to be in good shape. Piloxing is definitely a class I want to teach someday.
Update 1/15/2012 – I’m a certified Piloxing instructor! I teach at Xtend Barre in Mission Viejo on Wednesday mornings at 6:00am. Click here for more info. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re looking for a Piloxing Instructor in Orange County, CA.