Deodorant was not the thing to forget in a fitBallet class, this I learned very quickly today. Don't let the name fool you - it lulled me to a safe place, evoking images of sweat-free spaces - plush barre studios and ModelFit-style lofts. Instead, fitBallet is a wildly challenging circuit training class that takes inspiration from the classic positions and the precise form of ballet.
The hour-long workout itself focuses on full-body movements like burpees (hell), plies, squats and push ups. I knew I was in trouble when, already dripping in sweat and flush-faced (seriously, guys, I get so, so pink), my instructor Marc announced that the warm up was over and circuits to begin. While I found out later, in chatting with another student, that Marc is widely considered the toughest of fitBallet's team, I'm inclined to think that any class would be nearly as challenging. Most of the work is done on your feet or on the floor, with a particular focus on arms, abs, legs and obliques.
Frills free, the studio offers few comforts for big babies like me, accustomed to the plush spaces of overpriced fitness classes. At $32/class, I'd be lying if I said that I hadn't wished for an elevator or teleportation system to take me up to the 5th Floor, blasting AC and (sorry, y'all) cleaner floors. Fitballet is done barefoot, in slim fitting clothing that shows the body's lines. The studio, at the cusp of TriBeCa and Chinatown, offers mats or you're welcome to bring your own (I did). Whatever you do, don't forget a large bottle of water, or a towel. The men in my class literally had puddles beneath them.
To learn more or to book a class (new students pay just $20 and the studio is also on Classpass), visit fitBallet.org.