Ever wonder what it takes to really get a six pack (and we don’t mean of PBR)? Not sure why you still have a pot belly, even though you exercise? Want to know how to tone your arms without lifting a finger? Well, now you can have all your diet, wellness, and fitness questions answered right here on Greenpointers.
Fitness trainer, Dy Elise, owner of Greenpoint’s one of kind fitness & wellness center Human@Ease, Tim Haft, master of Beastanetics and Punk Rope, and Flannery Foster, co-founder of goodyoga, will now be taking your questions – from the right method of exercise for your body type to obstacles related to personal well-being.
Dy is a certified Personal Trainer (who trains Jen G), fitness competitor and Life & Nutritional Coach who has been in the fitness industry for nearly 15 years. She trademarked her own meditative approach to strength training called Introversion(R) Training. And there’s more (!)–she teaches and empowers people to become their own trainers and has been featured in several local media outlets including appearing as a guest host on NYC Media Brooklyn Savvy to talk about the benefits of life coaching.
Tim Haft is the creator of Punk Rope, the most popular rope-jumping based fitness class in the United States, and Beastanetics, a high-intensity interval-training program. He is certified as a personal trainer by the American Council on Exercise and holds additional certifications as a USA Track & Field Level 1 coach and a Stability Ball Instructor. He has been offering group and individual fitness training since 1998. Tim’s fitness philosophy centers on functional movement, play, and community.
Flannery Foster found yoga as a healing solution after being “unhealthy and unhappy for a pretty long time.” She received a 500 Hour Teaching Certification from YogaWorks (later becoming the Teacher Training Program Advisor) and taught in Sri Lanka for 2 months before traveling through South East Asia to immerse herself in Buddhist, Hindu, and Ayuvedic practices. Throughout the years, she has returned to India to learn and teach. Flannery founded goodyoga with her partner, Raymond Gonzales, in 2009, and has taught at many other studios, including Pure Yoga, Soma, Greenhouse Yoga, and YogaWorks.
So ask away and our expert fitness guru/trainer/yogi will dole out their words of wellness wisdom!
To wake up at 6:30 am on a Saturday, you must be nuts, you say? Maybe I am. But I woke up hella early because I was going on the Epic Bike Ride! Just a quick rundown: it’s 40 miles, from Williamsburg to the Rockaways, taking the coastal route of Brooklyn.
Epic Bike Ride was organized by the Brooklyn Greenway Initiative. These are the fine folks who have been working with the DOT on the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway, which is a 14-mile landscaped route, physically separated from traffic with separate paths for pedestrians and cyclists. When complete, the greenway will connect neighborhood parks and open spaces from Greenpoint to Bay Ridge. IMAGINE! Oh, the places we’ll go! Continue reading →
Are you stressed? Not feeling or looking your best? Bored of your old workout routine? Need to improve your diet? We have partnered with some of our favorite local fitness and wellness experts to bring to you our Spring Wellness Guide. It is packed with information, local fitness events, wellness tips, PLUS special Greenpointers discounts to help you get on your way to feeling your best this season!Sparrow Bk (95 Norman Ave)
About: Sparrow is an intersection of health, beauty, art, nature, and good old Brooklyn magic. Massage therapist and Reiki wizard, Ariel Sheldon teamed forces with Caroline Bach hairstylist, colorist and beauty maven to create Sparrow; a place of health and good grooming. Nestled steps away from the subway, this charming Greenpoint space offers a naturally relaxed and genuinely inspired experience.
Greenpointers Discount: Mention Greenpointers for 20% off your first session with each Massage Therapist.
“All of our massage therapists are trained to not only relax your body and transport your soul, but also to address any injuries, misalignments, or areas of chronic pain. We go a step beyond the common spa experience to help truly heal your body.”
Wellness Tip #1: Since most of us spend over 8 hours a day sitting a desk, your workspace is the first place to look in avoiding back pain. Most desks are made too high for the average person. You should be able to sit up straight, fully relax your shoulders, and still have a slight downward slope from your elbow crease to your wrists. Ergonomically we were made to work with our hands in our laps, so raise up your chair, and put something under your feet to relieve strain on your shoulders and your wrists.
Wellness Tip #2: Carpal Tunnel Syndrome has become increasingly common, and most people worry about “contracting it.” There are a lot of misconceptions about what exactly it is, and what treatments are available. The Carpal Tunnel is a small space between the bones of the wrist that the nerves to the hand passes through. These bones often get jammed together when the tendons to the fingers become tight and press on them as they pass over the wrist. Unless the bones are completely fused, which is very rare, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is usually completely treatable by the right kind of massage. If the muscles at the top of the forearm – which control the fingers – are released, the pressure on the tendons and therefore the wrist bones can also be released. So if you or anyone you know has pain in the wrist, or tingling in their fingers or hands – send them to Sparrow first!
intensati @ Human@Ease (31 Nassau Ave)
About: intensati is a revolutionary workout developed by Patricia Moreno. It’s a fusion of high-energy aerobics, martial arts, yoga, and strength conditioning. Combining spoken affirmations with simple choreography, intenSati provides a heart-pumping, exhilarating workout that builds physical, mental, and spiritual muscle. It is fitness at the highest efficiency and empowerment.
intenSati instructor Elina Leclaire has a passion for health & wellness, inspirational events, and coaching people to discover and pursue their dreams. For over a decade, she has helped challenge, inspire and equip more than 10,000 people through her company Dream Careers.
Since 2010 Elina has been practicing intenSati, a practice she loves to share as it has taken her to the next level in pursuing her own dreams. She teaches Wednesdays at 8pm and Sundays at 1:30pm at Human@Ease in Greenpoint.
You will leave class feeling stronger, uplifted and inspired. Elina is enthusiastic about leading you through a transformational workout of mind, body and spirit that will empower you to live a life you love.
Elina is co-leading a FREE fitnesss event in McCarren Park on Saturday, May 4th at 10:30am with wellness coach Ekayani Chamberlain. To join – meet at human@ease (31 Nassau Ave) at 10:30am. Elina hopes to continue to lead free fitness classes in the park on Saturday mornings. To sign up for free intenSati Saturdays in McCarren Park, email Elina at firstname.lastname@example.org
About: Boasting a 5-star average Yelp rating, Beastanetics is led by uber-friendly, supportive, and experienced, nationally certified personal trainers, Tim Haft and Shana Brady. This is the same duo, which brings you Punk Rope at the Greenpoint Y every Wednesday night. Tim and Shana have devised a highly effective, back to basics, interval training program, which has delivered fantastic results since it’s inception in 2010. In addition to delivering the goods when it comes to fitness, Tim and Shana have built a vibrant and supportive community of Beasts, which serves to enhance the entire experience.
Greenpointers Discount: Use the discount code GREENPOINTERS at checkout and receive 20% off the registration fee, that’s a savings of $24. (Valid for first-time Beasts only.)
Wellness Tip: In our book, feeling great begins with reducing “bad” stress. Try to uncover the triggers, which make you feel bad. These might be unhealthy foods, toxic relationships, or poor exercise habits. Next, realize that when it comes to fitness you are in control. You don’t need a gym. You don’t need any fancy equipment. You were born with everything necessary to reach an incredible level of fitness. Find a fitness instructor who motivates you and that you can learn from and join a program such as Beastanetics, which will challenge you while simultaneously offering love and support.
About: goodyoga has served the Greenpoint neighborhood since 2009. In late 2012 we expanded to Bushwick and Bed-Stuy. Our classes emphasize safe alignment, personal attention by experienced yoga teachers and small class sizes that give you room to move comfortably. Students appreciate our hospitality and the supportive community that goodyoga studios foster in their respective neighborhoods. Thanks to our goodkarma work exchange program, everyone can experience the benefits of a heathy yoga practice, regardless of their income.
Our Mysore Ashtanga program is offered 6 days a week and is led by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois authorized teacher Amy Santos. The popular open-air rooftop classes begin in late Spring and run through the Summer, weather permitting. Class Levels range from Absolute Beginner to Challenging and Styles include Vinyasa Flow, Hatha, Pilates Fusion, Theraputic and Restorative. Our Everyone level classes are our most popular, and are designed to appeal to a wide range of practitioners.
Greenpointers Discount: Mention Greenpointers to receive 10% off your monthly membership.
Wellness Tip: A personalized 7 day cleanse from goodyoga will leave you smelling like May flowers in no time. Scheduled at your convenience, your goodcleanse may be tailored to suit your needs by simplifying or elaborating any aspect.
The goodcleanse includes:
Detailed manual with instructions, grocery lists, basic recipes, schedules, ayurvedic practices, and information about the Chakras and the Yamas and Niyamas to support your cleanse.
Daily email support
(2) 30 minute phone consultations with cleanse counselor
12oz goodjuice – 6 per day x 3 days
4oz daily bestbucha – 1 per day x 7 days
goodteas – 1 per day x 7 days
Ayurvedic Herbal supplements
Unlimited week of goodyoga
All for $250
Optional packed goodfood x 4, please inquire
Optional materials available at all goodyoga locationspilatesmandi (171 Engert Avenue #7)
About: pilatesmandi provides Pilates and personal training expertly designed to meet your needs. Check out the 5 star rating on Yelp! This is a perfect environment for those who desire something different from the usual gym setting. Intimate and laid back, choose or combine Pilates on the apparatus, personal training or amazing cardio workouts on the trampoline. Play a record or select a rockin’ playlist for your workout. (Mandi L. shares her workout playlists on Spotify via Facebook)
Smart exercise selection, years of experience and a one-of-a-kind personality brings each pilatesmandi session to life.
Pilates Boot Camp on-the-roof coming soon!
Greenpointers Discount: Mention Greenpointers and receive 10% off first purchase!
About: Awakening NY is an exciting new urban sanctuary in the heart of Greenpoint/Williamsburg. We are an eco-green 7,000 sq.ft. state of the art Wellness Center and Healthy Cafe. Our facility boasts three beautifully designed studios, 3 large healing and massage rooms, 1 private steam room and a private Jacuzzi. Awakening is truly the destination for all things health and wellness from personal training and Ayurvedic Counseling to massages and Sound Healing Therapy. Awakening has no shortage of classes for everyone from beginners and advanced alike.
Awakening offers Power Strike, for children ages 7-12, yoga, pilates, zumba and even toning classes.
When you are done with your class or spa service head over to Cafe Anise at Awakening and enjoy one of it’s many healthy and organic juices or grab a sandwhich and take advantage of the free WiFi. The cafe even offers a special spring Goddess 3 day juice cleanse complete with one free Zumba class and a 20 minute Steam Shower. Awakening is rated 4 stars on Yelp! so why not come and see what the excitement is all about?
Greenpointers Discount: Mention Greenpointers when you come in to Awakening and receive 10% off your purchase of classes, spa services, and membership. (One time only.)
Fitness Tip #1: How to lose that arm jiggle? It’s spring and pretty soon everyone is going to be walking around town with more skin showing. Why not show off what could be your best asset…your arms? How to do this? Well you have to start by moving your Arms AND your body. Start in the morning by doing pushups until exhaustion, either modified or full pushups, followed by basic crunches until exhaustion (remember don’t let your chin touch your chest). Repeat this 2-3 times at least 3-4 times a weak. And walk to work or take the longest route to the train station or bus stop for some cardio. But remember you need to power walk NOT stroll. It’s ok to be that crazy person on the street. This is New York!
Fitness Tip #2: Lose that jiggle in the middle. Change your diet! Now that the weather is nicer it’s easier to eat healthier foods. Start by eating breakfast everyday. This is something which surprisingly enough most people do not do. Remove the white flower from your diet (bagels, white bread, white rice) and replace it with whole grains. Add more fruits, especially berries, and vegetables to your diet. And finally, replace one meal with a salad or high protein food with vegetables every day and you will start to see the waist line get smaller. Follow this with 30 minutes of exercise 3 days a week and you will start to see that old you come back.
About: Human@Ease is an alternative gym experience with 4.5 stars on Yelp. With our one of a kind Introversion® self training, we teach maximize effort to minimize time. This strength training method is slow reps at high intensity on a circuit of medical grade exercise machines. The result is less workout time with more achievement. Only four people are allowed at a time to work out, so you never have to wait for machines, and one of our friendly trainers will go through two workout routines with you to teach you proper technique and set up your machines & personal progress chart.
We also offer an array of classes including Zumba, Tai Chi, and donation based Yoga classes of varying principles.
Post workouts, we have an Infrared Sauna which mimics the beneficial rays of the sun without the damaging effects and burns up to 600 calories in one 30 min session; in-house massage therapists; and special detoxification packages to further promote your health.
Greenpointers Discount: When you mention Greenpointers, you’ll receive 1 Free Fitness Class or 20% Off a 5 pack of Self Training Sessions
Fitness Tip: What is the most effective type of exercise for your body type? Often I get asked, “What’s the best way to lose weight or what are the most effective workouts for me”? Although, there are hundreds of different varieties of exercise styles to chose from, it’s important to keep in mind that all of us earthlings have the same muscle and joint function and therefore should select a workout routine that works in direct accordance with that muscle and joint function. It should also offer full range of motion and progressive resistance. Now I know that sounds a bit technical but to put it to you straight, strength training is the only type of exercise that can fill those needs. Now, don’t get me wrong, you’ll benefit from most any type of motion, but strength training can offer benefits that no other type of exercise can offer all in one package. Of course, it needs to be done properly and in the right environment to achieve optimal results. So whether you like shakin’ your tush in Zumba, Zen-ning out and stretching in Yoga, or slamming your feet on the pavement; always, always strength train as your foundation. The good news is, if you apply the right intensity, you only need to do it once a week!
The lucky winner of 6 weeks of Beastanetics Bootcamp (worth $180) is Tim! Thanks for everyone who commented. There will be many more chances to win awesome things. You still win if you sign up for Beastanetics today, because Greenpointers readers get $30 off registration! Deets below.
**Use the code “GREENPOINTERS” to get $30 off your registration fee**
With a 5-star average rating on Yelp, Beastanetics is your ticket
to getting in the best shape of your life. The 6-week, 12-session
program, will incinerate fat, boost metabolism, and improve stamina,
speed, strength, power, agility, and mental toughness. Not to mention,
that the Beast community is incredibly friendly and supportive.
The butt kicking will be led by Beastanetics and Punk Rope creators,
Tim Haft and Shana Brady, who hold multiple, national fitness
certifications, and who have been getting folks in shape for more than
Class meets on the soccer field in McCarren Park, the perfect surface
for high-intensity training. Choose from one of the following slots:
Mondays and Wednesdays at 6:45am, 8am, or 9:15am
Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6:45am, 8am, or 9:15am.
Space is limited so act now!
If you want to try before you buy, Tim and Shana will be offering free
trial classes on Tu 9/4, Wed 9/5, and Thur 9/6 at 6:45am, 8am, and
Now is your chance to get your butt into amazing shape! Beastanetics is giving away a slot in an upcoming Boot Camp (begins next week) to one lucky Greenpointers reader. This 12 Session/6 Week Program that meets in McCarren Park will get you into amazing shape! (Retail value: $180!)
To enter: In the comments below, answer the following question:
What is your favorite time of the day to work out?
Deadline: Thursday 9/6/2012 at 11:59pm.
One lucky winner will be chosen at random and announced on Friday 9/7.
** Use code “GREENPOINTERS” to get $30 off your registration fee **
With a 5-star rating on Yelp and rave reviews in local press and from our students, Beastanetics is your ticket to getting in the best shape of your life. Even the honey badger will cower at the sight of you after you’ve completed the 6-week, 12-session program, which, by the way, culminates in a celebration at a local watering hole.
What’s the secret? Created by certified (and uber friendly) personal
trainers, Tim Haft and Shana Brady, Beastanetics offers a unique spin
on high-intensity, interval training, which will incinerate your fat,
boost your metabolism, and improve your stamina, speed, strength,
power, agility, and mental toughness. All the while, you’ll be
supported and encouraged by Tim and Shana, as well as by your fellow
Beasts, who range in age from 20s to 40s and include artists,
musicians, photographers, writers, journalists, comedians, designers,
and other cool folks that you’ll want to meet.
Class meets on the artificial turf field in McCarren Park, the perfect
surface for high-intensity training. Choose one of the following three
times slots: Mondays and Wednesdays at 6:45am, Tuesdays and Thursdays
at 8am, or Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9am. Slots are going fast so act
SIGN UP NOW and you will not only want to get into that teeny bikini (or speed-OH no) this summer … you’ll also want to get OUT of it … and into NAKED!
This June, QUICK FITNESS is taking bootcamp to the track! TRACY Helsing (“We Go Hard Bootcamp”, Food Network’s “FAT CHEF”) is joining forces with FAITH Pilger and DORIAN Cervantes to take her weekly indoor bootcamps to another level!
THREE FEMALE TRAINERS, EACH WITH THEIR OWN STYLE AND ENERGY TO MOTIVATE YOU, CHALLENGE YOU AND GET YOU INTO YOUR BOOTCAMP BODY!
AND they will be wearing NAKED SPORTS GEAR: an awesome new TAN THROUGH sports wear for the outdoor athlete …that’s YOU! ~ NO MORE UGLY WORKOUT TAN LINES!!!
(clink – I’ll drink to that)
So, get your butts over to Williamsburg’s McCarren Park EVERY SATURDAY IN JUNE at 9am, rain or shine!
It’s just one subway stop from the city (L train to Bedford or G to Nassau). We’ll meet at the purple workout/stretch bars on the Driggs Avenue side of the track.
SIGN UP NOW on Facebook…just click YES, even if you can’t make all of the dates.
This bootcamp is an hour long and the five week series is priced at $125 for the month. Drop-ins are welcome for $30 per class and if you can only make 3 or 4, we can prorate.
Commit to the package if you want to see real results!
Bootcampers will receive special NAKED benefits
EMAIL Tracy at email@example.com with any other questions. AND SERIOUSLY, the more the merrier, so please pass the word on and bring your friends as there will be plenty of tag team, cooperative and group exercises.
One of the not-so-hidden treasures of Greenpoint is the YMCA, which provides a slew of workout options in addition to community services for a fraction of the cost of most commercial gyms or private centers. The true strength – and occasional weakness, depending on the skill of the instructor and the mix of participants – of the facility are the classes. We’ve recently covered Punk Rope, and today I’m going to let you know what’s going on in the gym with the odd music every Sunday at 1:15: Tai Chi.
The instructor, “Joan” Zhou Xiaoying (周晓瑛） is a soft-spoken woman with an incredibly calm presence who comes to us from Ningbo, a city located in China’s Zhejiang province near Shanghai. Although she would never brag about it herself and would probably maim me with a crutch (she can do that)for saying so, she is a master of the art with over 30 years experience and numerous competition wins, including six gold medals from the American International Martial Arts Competition. In class at the YMCA, she is incredibly welcoming and patient with new students, and while her skills often surpass her English, her thorough knowledge of the forms she teaches allows her to work through any confusion. She teaches two sessions: the first, at 1:15 on Sundays, begins with opening light exercises that are very meditative, transitions into walking exercises, and then primarily focuses on teaching and practicing the 24-form chuan-style Tai Chi sequence. This form has a fascinating history in that it was designed by the Chinese government in 1956 to simplify the more complex styles to retain the positive health benefits while being easier to perform, allowing it to be practiced more widely in the country. In the second session, which begins directly following the first at 2:15, meditation, more complex forms, and the partner exercise called pushing hands are taught.
The class is comprised of an interesting mix of mostly local participants. One, Lorraine Salles, grew up in Greenpoint and has been practicing Tai Chi at the YMCA since 2003. Another, Jean Baptiste Boclé, has been at it for five years and has competed in several competitions. Both report benefits that I, at five months of practice, can echo: a pervasive sense of calm following the classes, increased strength and improved muscle condition overall, and a greatly enhanced sense of balance and of one’s own body. I’ll note that I mean balance in the purely physical sense: I can stand on one leg or hold myself upright on a shifting subway much better than I could a few months ago, and I’ve noticed that this has greatly improved other aspects of my workout, most notably the weight lifting.
The class is incredibly welcoming, and I have only one piece of advice for the interested newcomer: plan on leaving your first class totally bewildered. It will take at least 3-5 sessions before the motions begin to make sense to you on a physical level, and it’s imperative to work through it the first couple times until you start to understand the whole. I promise it is worth the time once you do, and you’ll be hard pressed to ever find another chance to work with a master like Zhou Xiaoying in such a direct and inexpensive setting.
These days, there’s no shortage of articles extolling the benefits of high-intensity interval training (HIIT for short), an exercise approach that alternates short periods of intense work with brief periods of rest. Its purported aim: to maximize fitness benefits in a minimal amount of time. Turns out the evidence seems to back this up: a recent NY Times feature highlights just one of many studies affirming that massive fitness gains are possible with short bouts of strenuous exercise. There goes that “I don’t have enough time to exercise” excuse.
A group of folks who meet in Williamsburg twice a week don’t need any scientific studies to convince them that interval training works. On Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 8 o’clock sharp, a group of “Beasts” gather in McCarren Park to willingly undergo a form of grueling exercise torment known as Beastanetics Boot Camp. Based on the Tabata protocol (a famous 1996 study and one of the first to definitively prove the benefits of High-intensity interval training), Beastanetics is led by Tim Haft, a fitness instructor who developed the regimen in 2010 after months of testing and experimenting. Not your typical boot camp drill sergeant, Tim is genial, supportive, and encouraging, and has a way of pushing his students to work hard without being intimidating in the least. Twenty second “work” intervals are divided by ever-decreasing “recovery” intervals, so the workouts never get easy.
Is there anything more annoying than waking up in the middle of the night, eyes wide open, unable to get a wink in? After weeks of this terrible pattern, awake at night and zombie during the day, I had to do something!
I am totally scared of sleeping pills, mostly the sleepwalking – and the suicidal thoughts, so I headed on over to goodyoga. After my fitness challenge at Human@Ease, they offered me a 1 month Yoga challenge, to attend at least 3 classes per week. I turned it down at first because of the time commitment, but after endless sleepless nights I realized I needed it.