Flatiron fitness studio The Movement appears to have a thing for funky workout props you’ve probably never used before (ahem, bendy body bars). Its newest class, which just kicked off on Monday, September 29, centers around the ReXist360, a next-generation resistance band system, which you’ll wear for almost the entire 45-minute session.
Here’s what you need to know about the ReXist: Basically it’s a resistance band you put around your legs right above your knees, but instead of just being a loop of rubber, it consists of neoprene cuffs you wear on each leg that a strap then attaches to using Velcro panels. So instead of digging into your legs and moving all over the place, it stays put comfortably while you move around, and it also allows for a much bigger range of motion.
Until now, ReXist has been a prop you’d use to amp up the intensity of at-home squat sessions, but the brand’s master trainer Shay Kostabi (a bicoastal dynamo you probably know from Flybarre) created ReXist360 HIIT as the first boutique fitness application, and she’ll be teaching it at the studio during October (and training others to do so).
The tough class consists of six sets of conditioning intervals that work the entire body and get the heart rate up almost right away. Think squats, jumping lunges, and plank variations and cooler creative moves like standing crunch twists (I’ll let you try to imagine what those look like). There’s an abs- and butt-focused floor section where you can feel Kostabi’s barre background, too. But the entire session is super athletic, and you never stop moving.
The key is that having the band on the entire time makes your legs work like crazy, and ups the cardio factor the entire time. During my class, Kostabi had us unstrap for a couple minutes about 30 minutes into class, and I was blown away by the feeling. My legs felt wobbly like jello, but squats also suddenly felt like a breeze.
And with Kostabi at the helm, there’s never a dull moment. She brings a high intensity level of energy to every second of the class, moving to the music, encouraging you to work harder, and bouncing around as if the band didn’t even exist for her. (Whatever, she’s had way more practice.) —Lisa Elaine Held
ReXist360 HIIT at The Movement, $32, 32 W. 18th St., between Fifth and Sixth Ave., www.themovementfitness.com