Jazzercise: Easygoing Workout in Sheikh Zayed
When we headed out to the Jazzercise studio at
Arkan Mall in Sheikh Zayed City we weren’t sure quite what to expect. A
pleasant receptionist gave us a brief description of the program and directed
us to the locker room to drop off our belongings. After enquiring about any
past injuries, we were shown into the studio to begin our class.
The ladies-only dance studio is thankfully equipped
with a good ventilation system. The instructor leads the class from an elevated
platform at the front of the room and there are exercise balls and light hand
weights placed on the side.
Expecting a not-so-intensive workout, we were
pleasantly surprised to find that we worked up a sweat about 5-10 minutes into
the class. Menna, our instructor, is a contagiously energetic dancer who bounces
through the choreographed steps effortlessly. Her energy combined with the
choice of hip-hop and dance tunes makes it a lot like being at an energetic
party – albeit in sneakers.
The workout combines aerobics, dance and
resistance training with a little kickboxing. The combination of dance and
aerobics will have you sweating, while the rapid pace of different exercise sets
requires some degree of coordination.
The class has a minimum age of 11, and sharing the class with young teenagers threw
us off a bit at the beginning, but we quickly adapted. Some of the girls were
there working out with their mothers, which is an advantage for mums who want
to get some exercise without fussing about the kids.
The studio is equipped with a surround-sound
system and the music is on full blast throughout the workout. The music is
switched off briefly for water breaks, with a water cooler and plastic cups conveniently
available for use.
After 45 minutes of ‘jazzercising’, our
instructor switched off the music and asked us to collect some weights from the
stack; the weights available ranged from 0.5kg – 4kg.
The instructor led the group through a series of
standing abdominal exercises. She explained and demonstrated the moves – with a
couple of variations for different levels – and then switched on the music for
the sets. Once again, the routine was closely choreographed with the music.
After the abs came strength training. Once
again, Menna walked us through the different sets, which we then did in tune with
the music. Once completed, we settled down for a stretching and cool down
routine to some mellow tunes. Breathing deep, our heart rate slowly returned to
a semi-normal state before ending the class.
For those seeking more diversity, this is not
the place to go, as the program includes only one class – the jazzercise class.
There are no classes on Friday but they are offered on all other days at 11AM
and 8PM; a 9AM class is also offered Sunday, Tuesday and Wednesday and a 12PM is
available every day except Tuesday.
Pay-per-class rates are 80LE per person. Their
summer promotion offers 25% off packages, with 8 classes at 405LE, 36 classes
at 1,010LE, and 96 classes at 2,025LE. A 1-year membership with unlimited
access to classes will cost you a whopping 4,050LE.
While the class was fun it was not a ‘killer
work-out’, if that’s what you’re looking for, as it mainly focuses on cardio
and coordination. Also, the lack of diversity in classes and low value for
money make it somewhat limited.