It’s never too early to start working on that summer body right? Bondi Beach delivers with an amazing new boutique studio, MPower Pilates. We sent our health and fitness writer Larissa Yu along to try a Spring Sculpt class.
MPower’s brand new studio houses not only a Reformer room but also a Spring space dedicated to the lesser-known, super-effective, classic Pilates equipment pieces: the Wunda Chair and Springboard. While most Pilates fans are familiar with the Reformer bed, I was keen to put the Spring equipment through its paces.
How was it? The cosy sun-filled corner studio is immediately welcoming, with bus stops on the doorstep and plenty of unmetered on-street parking. Centrally-located and popular with Bondi locals, I was soon to find out why. Classes are small and intimate, with no more than 6 students at a time, leaving lots of time for personal attention and bespoke customisation of exercises. Starting with the wall-mounted Springboard, we moved through a sequence that was both challenging and energising. As well as working the core, the Springboard can work each limb unilaterally with varying degrees of resistance springs, forcing brain and body to work together for stability, coordination and balance. We backed this up with some mat work using balls, resistance bands and lying down Springboard work. Ten slow leg circles in my muscles were SHAKING… #success
And I am now officially a huge fan of the Wunda Chair. It’s basically a padded stool contraption, with springs and pedals. Great for building stability and flexibility, it provides better overall support than just using bodyweight and gravity for resistance like you do in mat Pilates. We finished class with a short sequence that I loved so much I asked my instructor if they offer Wunda Chair-only classes (keen much??). They currently don’t, but instructors tailor each class to students’ abilities (some use the chair more heavily than others) and they also keep sequences ever-changing to cater to their devoted daily attendees.
The verdict: I left class feeling pleasantly buzzed, breaking a light sweat and with tired muscles. The variety of equipment kept things interesting and fun. I recommend newbies start with the Spring Sculpt class, with a focus on alignment & toning, before trying the more intense Spring Power. Both feature the same kinds of exercises, Power is just more fast-paced so you’d want to be familiar with the moves first. I also learned that most of the Spring exercises are the same or similar to what you do on the Reformer bed so the workout achieves comparable results.
Need to know: The studio is petite, so the bathroom is located outside around the corner. Come dressed ready to work out as there isn’t a change room or shower area. BYO water bottle to sip throughout class, and a small sweat towel. Bottled water is available to buy, along with a small range of activewear. Cool down after class with a short stroll to beautiful Bondi Beach for a quick refreshing dip, fresh juice or swim/sauna at the ever-Instagrammable Icebergs pool.
TIP: Wear those exercise socks with the sticky grips on the bottom. Not worrying about sliding or losing balance allows you to focus better on having correct form. They sell them at the studio if needed for AU$15.
Who: MPower Pilates Where: 1-7 Curlewis Street, Bondi Beach NSW 2026. Mon-Thurs morning classes approx 6.15-10.30am, then evenings 4pm-6.30pm. Fri-Sun morning classes only. No lunch time classes at the moment. Prices: There is currently a Starter Pack offer of $100 for 10 days unlimited classes. Individual and discounted class packs (for both group and private classes) can be purchased and booked online here.
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