Fitness is getting more intense every year. There’s literally a fitness class that’s so hardcore that you have to sign a death waver to join it. And here we are impressed with ourselves for only being a little bit out of breath by the time we reach the top of the stairs.
Spinning classes have surged in popularity over the last ten years and one indoor cycling team are looking for the most high definition way of improving the tried-and-true pedalling formula.
Their bright idea is called IMAX Shift and it’s a new 50-seat cycling studio surrounded by a panoramic screen.
The concept is an off-shoot of the New York originating SoulCycle – a spinning class that tajes place in a darkened studio with ear-shatteringly loud music and a trainer that has the volume control of a military general.
Riders in ImaxShift get all of the above as well as the sensation of traversing a huge variety of intense environments courtesy of the 40-foot-wide by 24-foot-high IMAX screen, reports the Independent.
The visual cues are orchestrated in a way that forces you to react to them like you would in real life. You’ll have to change speeds and increase resistances depending on your environment.
But don’t be fooled into thinking that you’re going to get projections of your bog-standard cycling environments. These segments will have you pedalling across alien planet surfaces, sat in the front seat of a rollercoaster and then transport you to a long beach head in Hawaii.
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Speaking to Th New York times, one ImaxShift participants said: “I do the music video ride on Mondays — that’s really awesome. They also have the themed rides like the outer-space one or the ’90s pop rock one coming up”
Another member admires the distractive techniques of the class: “Your legs are burning and you are sweating, but you are focused on this beautiful scene in front of you that you are so enraptured by”.
This is a New York exclusive class but with over 4,000 riders participating since Imax Shift opened, the popularity might inspire a fitness team on this side of the pond to open an UK class.