Die-hard fitness enthusiasts are turning fitness studios into nightclubs for ‘party workouts’.
Recently, fitness expert Dinaz Varvatwala organised a fitness party, called Natyobics. It was a night when die-hard exercise enthusiasts danced to heart-racing Bollywood numbers in an atmosphere that was a combination of a nightclub and a high-intensity fitness session.
Adding to the vigour of the adrenalin rush at Natyobics was Bollybeats by Mahesh Katta and bhangra by Riwnak. The ‘night-out’ had participants of all age groups, to learn a new dance form and to test their body’s limits.
“Natyobicsis a high-intensity fat-burning workout done to Bollywood music. At this fitness party, several fitness enthusiasts and celebrities grooved to the beats of Zumba, sweating out their calories in the Bollyactive workout. I choreographed the song using Indian dance aerobic moves — a traditional heel dig using dance styles such as Kathak and Bharatanatyam. I worked in the beats per minute (BPM) to get to the desired number of steps on the Fitbit,” elaborates Dinaz. And as sure as daylight, participants at the ‘party’ achieved about 5,000 Fitbit steps, burning up to 600 calories in a one-hour high-intensity session.
Have your cake and eat it too
Today, fitness studios offer everything from birthdays and to reunions, and professionals are only too happy to jump on board with this new trend.
Fitness expert Sri, who rang in his birthday in a similar fashion, believes fitness parties force everyone to unplug, soak up the atmosphere and channel their energies while burning the calories. “The session is a reason for friends to get together and shed inhibitions for an hour. It’s refreshing to see so many people choosing to celebrate special occasions in more active ways, by seeking classes that enable them to focus on their fitness,” Sri says.
And fun is just a session away for enthusiasts at such parties. An attendee at Dinaz’s Natyobics, Dr Shashikala Reddy, principal, Osmania Medical College, talked about the fun-tastic experience she had there, emphasising on the ‘fun’ in the word. “Fitness parties are a fun way not only to work out and burn calories but also to generate a lot more positive energy than a one-on-one workout, which requires a lot of commitment and dedication and mental strength for one to start seeing results,” she reiterates.
So what does one wear to these ‘parties’, with live DJ to complete the party atmosphere, you ask?
While most people wear workout clothes, most party hosts encourage creative costumes. The dress code at Dinaz’s first fitness party, for instance, was pants, shimmer tops, shoes and makeup!
Fitness or a vanity party?
Despite all the fun fitness parties trend is catching on. However, Sabina Xavier, entrepreneur and fitness freak, believes fitness is more serious and disciplined and about doing consistently every day, every week and every month.
“I can see how the concept of a fitness party appeals to some, having fun with friends — showing off who can lift heavier or who can do more burpees, lunges, squats or box jumps. The practical side of me is thinking ‘alcohol combined with dumbbells or barbells is basically asking for injuries’, and I don’t know how many would want to take that chance. The vain side of me is also thinking running foundation, dripping mascara, smudged lipstick and a drenched t-shirt… that’s not what I would want. I like my parties to remain an opportunity to chat with friends, have a glass of wine and some good food and basically unwind.”
But celebrity fitness trainer Reema Sarin, who hosted India’s first fitness party in 2003, is a regular with setting up such parties and sees it otherwise.
“In a fitness party, you need a dance floor to create the right high-energy vibe and enthusiasm among guests. Moreover, in such a party, no one should be sitting — it’s all about moving on the floor, eating healthy snacks like salad with fat-free dips and having juices for drinks,” adds Reema, founder of fitness bashes called BOLLYFIT. “And there will have to be a DJ, who lives up to the pressure of playing the latest genres of the most fantastic music.”
Actress and fitness enthusiast Sanjjanaa, who also calls herself a yoga activist, also thinks these ‘parties’ are a great trend.
“I think it is really wonderful to see people taking fitness seriously and as a part of their daily routine and lifestyle. In the stressful times we live in, it is very important that we let loose and work out and party together,” she says.