​Class Review – Crowd Surf Ready

​Class Review – Crowd Surf Ready

Gymbox and StubHub have teamed up to offer music fanatics the ultimate festival fitness class in time for summer. A workout that combines both cardio and strength training, Crowd Surf Ready will have you lifting and surfing your way to the front of the crowd. Gymbox member Genevieve Teevan goes into the fitness mosh pit.

‘90s fashion is back and so is the ultimate ‘90s festival stunt: crowd surfing. To celebrate this and to encourage everyone to get off their butts this Summer StubHub and Gymbox have teamed up to offer music fanatics the ultimate festival fitness class.

Gymbox legend and Mechanical Engineering PhD student, Firas Iskandarani (pictured below) has studied the gravitational physics of crowd surfing and created a new class to make sure our crowd surf technique is on point. His highly technical tip: ‘After a few bevvies, you may be feeling a bit floppy, but the most important thing when you crowd surf is to keep your body straight’. Staying rigid up there means strong abs, folks.

Before taking this class, I would never have had the courage or inclination to crowd surf. Now I see the appeal. Floating on a sea of anonymous hands might just be the ultimate expression of trust in your community of concert comrades. Whether you plan to carry or be carried this summer, Crowd Surf Ready will familiarise you with the feeling of supporting the weight of live bodies and let you try crowd surfing in a safe, structured setting. In just 45 minutes, the class recreates the exhilarating feeling of being a star among front row ticket-holders. As a bonus, it’s also a decent workout. The warm up is a fast and dirty sequence of hollow body sits, lunges, squats and lifts. Your upper body heats up quickly because you’re hugging weighted Eleiko plates to your chest and lifting them above your head. I start with just 5kg but the warm-up is brief so don’t be afraid to use 10kg or more.

To prepare for actual crowd surfing, we pair up and take turns hanging from the bars with an overhand grip, straight arms and body parallel to the floor. This is essentially a front lever, a fairly advanced gymnastic move if you were to do it solo, but we hold each other up as much as is needed. This lift activates your abs and lower back muscles which have to take the weight of your torso and legs. The next step in our gradual development of crowd surf technique is to form two lines facing each other with our arms stretching up to make an arch. With straight arms tensed, we pass medicine balls, then a heavy log-shaped bag and finally actual logs strung loosely on a rope up and down the line before we graduate (nervously) to handling each other. Firas shows each surfer how to jump up using people’s shoulders and the rest of us how to pass them along the line with our hands at their shoulders, waist and legs. You can always grab the overhead bars if you feel insecure but, thanks to Firas’s tutelage, we manage not to drop a single surfer. I truly feel Crowd Surf Ready.

Firas is a lot of people’s favourite instructor so you’ll have to be quick to book into this class: Gymbox Farringdon, Thursdays at 12.15-1pm from 14 July.

You can follow Genevieve on Twitter: GjTeevan or Insta: @gjteevan