Under Personal Trainer Gael Guevara's awesome instruction, Derek and some of the Greatist ladies — Kelli, Jordan, Kate, and Katherine (that’s me!) — lifted, lunged, dragged, lugged, and toe-tapped a hollow rubber cylinder that resembled a large didgeridoo (with built-in handles) for a solid hour.
Since we were one ViPR short of a full-team supply, Gael customized our introductory experience by rotating us all through a circuit of signature ViPR moves and body-weight drills. We started with basic squats while tilting vertical ViPRs front and back in front of us. (Those without ViPRs did jumping jacks.) Then we progressed to a series of ViPR-accompanied lunges. But before we got too comfy in our sneakers, Gael led us to the indoor beach volleyball court where we sprang (barefoot) into a circuit: running around the court (sans ViPR); crouching over the ViPR, pulling it between our legs while scrambling backwards across the court to pull it through our legs again with the opposite hand (repeating until we'd each gone a full court's length). Next up: More squats, this time lifting the ViPRs vertically above our heads and swinging them between our legs. And then: lateral-shuffle to side lunges, guiding the rim of the ViPR towards the foot of the bent knee. We topped it off with the ViPR box pattern and finished off with deadlifts and bent-over rows. We were all impressed by just how many things one can do with this strange but extremely versatile device. (Don’t over-think that statement.) As it turns out, ViPRs can also be used to take out some serious aggression, too (not to mention a myriad of other exercises). Add Gael’s instruction and the surprisingly strenuous workout we got, and all of us were left wanting to schedule another session soon. Interested in trying it out yourself? It might be time to start saving: Classes at Chelsea Piers in NYC currently run between $400 and $500 bucks (for 4-week long sessions at two classes per week). And purchasing one of these tools yourself runs about $200 (without the formal training, which you will definitely want to consider). And For those in other states, chain fitness centers like Equinox and Gold’s Gym now offer ViPR classes along with membership. The Everything ViPR Blog also has some great resources for folks at all fitness levels. Be sure to follow Gael Guevara for updates on discounted, group, and private ViPR training meetups if you’re in the NYC area. (FYI parents: Gael runs ViPR classes for kids, too.) Have you tried the ViPR? What has your experience been like? Tell us about it in the comments section below!