Ride to the beat while learning easy-to-follow choreography. With a playlist specially designed to push you to your limits, this class takes your cycle to a whole new level, says Elan James.
I walk into a dark spin studio overlooking Gymbox, I take the centre stage bicycle, ready to burn rubber, the room is cool with a gentle breeze of the fan as few more people enter. We settle quietly into our seats, water at the ready. From behind me I hear a commanding voice, ooh er!
At first I think it’s some form of surround sound speakers that have been cleverly hidden in the walls, but as the sound travels closer, I turn to see our instructor striding to the front of the studio with a powerful sense of purpose. Although the class was new, this instructor looked like a veteran.
The tunes go on and the bass pumps, setting the rhythm as we start the warm up. Two minutes pass and the studio is getting warm. The first drip of sweat makes its way down my forehead.
We start the session with some choreography to a 4 count, nothing too hard, but it keeps us focussed and reminds us to keep the drive coming from the legs and never to rely on the handle bars. Just as I’ve settled into the choreography, we up the pace, twice as fast, four times as fast... we’re now flying through the movements, up down, left right, tap tap, cross tap up down! The music guides us all as we start to move quicker than we can think, muscle memory has taken over, which is just as well because the ride is getting tougher by the second!
Just as I feel the fatigue take over and I start to slow down, our instructor catches my eye and gestures a spinning wheel with his hands, he wants me to go faster, so I do. The dripping sweat has made it’s way down my face and is now in free fall on it’s way to the floor, the downpour begins. I’m struggling now and my legs are screaming for a break, just before I can give no more, I hear that beautiful word, “Recover!”
Everybody grabs their water and takes a quick swig, we drop the tempo and the resistance just long enough to hear what’s coming next. When it comes to indoor cycling, After a few tracks of any genre, the music can blend into background and the sound of your tired legs asking you to stop creeps up on you. Not at Cycle’ography though, there’s still a creeping rise of the volume, but it’s not my thighs, it’s a movie soundtrack!
I’m confused and I peddle on, curious to find out what I’m expected to do. “This is a slow climb!” shouts the instructor. I sit back in my seat, squeeze the handle bars and prepare. These epic movie crescendos are lengthy during the films, during an indoor cycling class, every rotation of the peddles is a teeth gritting second that you can’t help but love and need more of. The music builds again and I feel like Maximus Decimus Meridius, but without the murdered family to avenge.
Our instructor yells and we up the resistance, the peddling is slow and I can hear the group breathing heavily, we’re all in this together. I don’t know what films they are currently playing in their heads, but it’s safe to say we’re all playing the heroes. Finally the music peaks, the focus in the room is intense, “Recover!” We take a bigger gulp this time and settle right back into the riding position.
45 minutes after I first stepped into the room, I’m a dripping mess, but I feel quite the champion. We stretch, cool down and leave the studio looking like we just hopped out of an Olympic pool rather than a cycle studio. The class was hard, and I feel challenged. The ever changing music and ever watchful eye of the instructor was the key to this class’s success. At no point was I going through the motions, the whole room was focussed and pushing harder than they thought they could. If you’re going to try this class, remember three things – some water, a towel and you’re favourite movie story line.
Follow Elan right here.