Motivation is the defining element of Trooper Fitness, an intense, all-in bootcamp designed by Prince Brathwaite, a star New York Sports Club trainer who has a growing following outside they gym.
Brathwaite normally trucks his ropes, weights, and bands to East River Park for class. But until the weather gets slightly warmer, he’s set up shop inside Body Space Fitness in Union Square, where an astroturf lawn approximates the outdoor setting.
The class is divided into two halves. The first half is all about body-weight and resistance-band exercises for 30-second and one-minute intervals. There are an unbelievable amount of squats and burpees, and Brathwaite ups the difficulty of already killer moves by creating tough combos like alternating speed drills with jump backs into push-ups—over and over.
At halftime, you split up into teams and compete in a suicide sprint relay. And, when it seems like class should be over, you launch into the workout’s second half: more two-minute intervals that include stations like resistance-band bear crawls, battling ropes, and kettlebells lifts.
Brathwaite’s an auctioneer of encouragement throughout. While he’s killing your quads, he cheers you on without taking a breath, using his Trooper catchphrases. “All we know is go! Unbreakable, you got it! Don’t stop, you’re not just strong, you’re trooper strong. Troopers don’t stop when they’re tired, they stop when they’re done.” Sold.
His investment in your success doesn’t end there. After class, a motivational poster appeared on Facebook congratulating everyone who came. “WAY TO DEFINE WHAT IT MEANS TO BE A TROOPER!!! #ALLWEKNOWISGO,” he wrote. Every person from the boot camp was tagged. And most of us “Liked” it. —Lisa Elaine Held
Who’s it for: Boot camp lovers, those who need encouragement to get going, seekers of strength-training workouts.