Early last month, Equinox opened the doors to its brand new club located in Yorkville in Toronto.
For those who are unfamiliar with Equinox, they operate 78 upscale full-service clubs in North America and around the world. Equinox has so much more to offer than a regular gym. They offer their own branded programs, services and products as well as studio classes, personal training, spa services, apparel and a food/juice bar. When you join an Equinox club, you join a lifestyle and have access to topnotch services.
I had the opportunity to check out the new facility last week and try one of their most popular classes with Julian Ho called “Ropes & Rowers“.
The first thing you’ll notice when you walk into the Avenue. Rd club is how modern, sophisticated and beautiful everything looks. They kept the aesthetic and design similar to their club located on Bay St. with marble and steel but the space is a whole lot bigger. Their facilities are sleek, minimalist and tastefully decorated. You don’t feel overwhelmed or intimidated by the different areas of the club, unlike so many other facilities.
At the Yorkville location, you will find two big studios for group classes, a big room filled with brand new state-of-the-art fitness machines and equipment, a pilates studio, a yoga studio, a cycling studio as well as a space designated for personal training. You will also find a spa adjacent to the women’s luxurious and spacious locker room as well as a steam room.
“Ropes & Rowers” is a high intensity 1hr class given by Equinox star trainer Julian Ho. This interval training class is a full body circuit featuring the WaterRower and battling ropes. It is also one of Equinox’s most popular classes, so I asked Julian Ho why that is.
“R&R’s rise to popularity is due to it’s simplicity, efficiency, and motivating nature. The format is unlike traditional group fitness in that it uses various programming parameters. In other words, a participant experiences 4 variations of classes in one. This hybrid form of training is reflective of circuit training found in MMA conditioning and High Performance Sport training. The use of the rowers and ropes in particular have never been brought into the main studios of group fitness until now. Also, the quantitative nature makes R&R more motivating. People enjoy knowing the numbers because it sets expectations and thus allows participants to fulfill their own intensity needs and desires,” he explains.
This was my first ever R&R and definitely a class I would recommend taking. So who is this class best suited for? Julian explains:
“I believe this class should be taken by 3 types of individuals for different reasons:
1. Those individuals who have athletic backgrounds looking to enhance their conditioning and overall performance in their sport.
2. Those individuals who do not have athletic backgrounds looking to develop athleticism for long term health benefits, broaden their exercise experiences, and try something fresh, fun, and challenging.
3.Those individuals who have had team sports experience looking to reap the benefits of high performance group training and feel the camaraderie and team-building nature that R&R prides itself on providing.”
There are many reasons why Equinox differs from other clubs, explains Julian.
“Equinox is not just a club, it is an experience. Once you walk into an Equinox facility, you feel the energy of the staff, the thriving nature of its members, and the powerful and beautiful ambiance. Equinox’s approach is holistic. It upholds a philosophy that supports the synergy between Movement, Nutrition, and Regeneration. When thinking more deeply on what Equinox is, it truly is a lifestyle and therefore a mindset,” he adds.
I couldn’t think of a better way to cap off my experience at Equinox last week than with one of their yummy peanut butter smoothies from their juice bar. The perfect post-workout treat!
For more information on the new Equinox facility located at 55 Avenue Road in Toronto, please go here.