I Tried It: TRX & Abs at the Sporting Club at the Bellevue

Should you do it or ditch it? We try out area classes so you don't have to waste time or money on workouts that don't make the grade

What I wanted: A new way to work my abs and trim my arms.

What I tried: The 6 p.m. TRX & Abs class at the Sporting Club at the Bellevue

Who was teaching: Caitlin

Student/teacher ratio when I dropped by: 8:1 (8 is the max number of students allowed per class, because that’s how many TRX straps they have available, like the ones shown here).

Lockers/Showers: Um, like, the best ever. If you haven’t seen the women’s locker rooms/showers—sorry, men, haven’t been there, but I’ve heard they’re just as fabulous— you’re missing out. There’s tons of space, numerous mirrors with hair dryers and curling irons, shower caps and razors, and lots of fluffy white towels. If you forget a lock, see the super-sweet lady at the spa; she’ll let you borrow one in exchange for your ID.

What I loved: That within a matter of minutes I was already breaking a sweat and could feel my heart thumping, and 30 minutes into it a side glance to my arms right before I started another set of TRX pushups found they were visibly trembling. The class moved quickly and hit every major muscle group from all angles—oh, my poor biceps!—and the TRX moves felt new and challenging. The abs exercises allowed my arms and back to recover (slightly) in between TRX sets.

What could be better: The mats had seen better days (way better), and were a little gross to lie down on. As a beginner, the class seemed a bit fast. If you’re not already in decent shape with a strong core, scheduling a one-one-one with a TRX trainer to perfect form is probably best. There were a few times where I felt a pull in my back until I corrected my alignment.

Did I sweat?: Lots, and so did everyone around me. The guy next to me was a TRX newbie as well, and I spent the entire class trying to not laugh over his repeated “You gotta be kidding me” and a certain four-letter word that he muttered when the next move was introduced (and especially during the intense TRX pushups and abs series that closed out the class). I also was incredibly sore for the next two days, including my arms, upper back, and obliques, so I knew it was a great workout.

Do it or Ditch it: Definitely do it. This class shakes up your routine and zeros in on nearly all trouble spots.

Weigh In: Have you tried this class? Tell us what you thought! And if you have a class you loved or hated, let us know. We could run your Sweat Test in an upcoming newsletter.

The Sporting Club at the Bellevue, 224 South Broad Street, 215-985-9876, sportingclubbellevue.com