When I first heard that David Lloyd, Long Ashton was introducing a new fitness class called Blaze my first thought was that it sounded pretty hardcore. Funny how a name can conjure up all sorts of images in your mind, isn’t it? Blaze of fury, Blaze of fire, just what was going to be set a-Blaze? Turns out…it was me (in a totally metaphorical sense, of course).
I tried a class out and I most certainly left with an ignited passion for exercise. I felt amazing afterwards, euphoric.
Blaze is a high-intensity interval training (HIIT) boutique style fitness class. It’s set to music specially mixed by top dance DJs which gives the class a really edgy feel. Participants are privy to cutting-edge technology thanks to the MYZone belts that are handed out on entry. The MyZone belt heart rate monitors are used to motivate members of the class in a group exercise environment. Stats from the monitors flash up on a screen during the class to encourage healthy competition within the group. The point of the monitoring is to try and ensure you stay within the red (fat burning) zone and work your hardest throughout the class. The info from the class can be downloaded to your own app to track progress and will help challenge you to constantly break your own personal record.
The Blaze studio houses Woodway treadmills, a bespoke weights bench and suspended punch and core bags for mixed martial arts. My first thought when I took a look at the studio was circuit training but Blaze is far more intense than any circuits I’ve ever done. It is very fast paced with little time for rest which made it hard work but I love a challenge.
The Woodway treadmills were easy to work, can be set to an incline or flat – I left mine on flat – and I was able to easily set the speed to my current sprint level. The weights benches are equipped with different dumbells in various weights, I went for the smallest ones which were actually still quite heavy especially when you’re doing squats with them for 4 minutes straight! The punch and core bags were a brilliant addition and I enjoyed this aspect of the class the most. They allow participants to perform a mixture of punches and kicks. There’s nothing like taking all your aggression out on a full-sized punch bag – it’s as exhilarating as it is exhausting.
The class works by allocating participants a number. For example, if you begin on weights bench number 5 you will move on to treadmill number 5 and so on. Stick to your number and no one will get confused this ensures the class keeps its momentum. Rounds are divided into 3-4 minutes at each station, with coloured lights indicating the end of a round. There’s also an instructor telling you which exercises to do and to keep you motivated throughout.
I found myself checking the screen often to see if my name was yellow, green or red (red meaning I was working the hardest) but there wasn’t any time or inclination to look and see what everyone else was doing. I loved the incorporation of the screen because as soon as I saw the colour change from red I really stepped it up a gear. You can expect to burn somewhere between 500-1000 calories in a 45-55 session, which is incredible.
I felt as though this was the type of class you would have to pay a premium for – it is an authentic boutique experience that I’d expect to find somewhere like London. So to find out it’s available at David Lloyd Clubs and is included in the price of the membership is fantastic. I’ll definitely be going again because I absolutely loved it and felt like I’d had such a brilliant all-round workout.
Blaze is available at the following David Lloyd clubs: Kensington, Manchester Trafford City, Edinburgh, Leeds, Milton Keynes, Woking, Kings Hill, Acton Park and my local club – Long Ashton, Bristol. If you’ve got one close to you, book a class because I can guarantee you’ll be hooked!
So come on, join the #BlazeTribe what are you waiting for?
Check out the David Lloyd website for membership enquiries.
*This is a collaborative post