Earlier this year I followed along while my bloggy friends, Jess and Jo, did a 30-day Core Fusion Challenge. It sounded a lot like the Dailey Method classes I'd been taking. So when I visited New York last month, I made it a point to attend a Core Fusion class so I could experience it first-hand. Fundamentally it's very similar to The Dailey Method. The focus of the training is on the core and incorporates elements of Yoga, Pilates and Barre. Most of the exercises are small in range of motion but very effective (and challenging).
However there were differentiators from The Dailey Method that I preferred. For example, Core Fusion incorporates cardio work, which I liked. Also, when doing core work, sometimes your neck can feel strained from doing so many crunches, or holding a pose for so long. I have felt this in DM, but not once did I feel it in CF. This was a huge plus for me.
There aren't any Core Fusion classes offered in the Bay Area, so I ordered 2 of their DVD's so I can practice them at home. There's a whole series of different Core Fusion disciplines and while I wanted to get them all, I had to be practical and decided to start off with two - Core Fusion Pure Abs & Arms and Core Fusion Energy Flow Yoga. Since I've been laid up for the past week and not able to run, I've been able to do these workouts quite a few times. While I would prefer a live class, these DVD's did not disappoint.
Pure Abs and Arms I first started with the Pure Abs and Arms. The description indicated that a band was needed and I planned on using the band that my physical therapist had given me. But to my delight, when I opened the DVD, there was a band packaged in it!
The workout starts off using hand weights. The lightest sets I have are 5 pounders, which you think would be sufficient, right? Ummm, I could barely finish the segment. My arms were on fire. Those tiny micro bends and lifts at different angles make you feel every muscle.
After working with the hand weights, I could barely get a full range of motion for the band work. It's tough stuff, but I felt amazing after completing it.
Energy Flow Yoga I'll get right to the point. This workout was amazing. Ah-mazing!
From the very beginning, it worked the areas that my body needs the most help with - hips, glutes and balance. I thought my glute meds and hips were doing pretty well in recent weeks, but after just a few minutes into the Introduction, I learned that I need to start paying attention to them again.
I am not really a fan of sun salutations, but I loved the ones in this workout. Like Pure Abs and Arms, it had a cardio element that raised my heart rate; I definitely had some sweat going on.
There were different yogis in the DVD that demonstrated modifications for every level, which were very helpful. I couldn't do some of the more challenging poses, so seeing how they could be modified help me continue on and not quit, something that I would normally do during a DVD home workout.
And it had some solid core work; a whole segment dedicated to it. This is what I look for in a quality yoga session.
The name says it all - "Energy + Flow" is the perfect description for it. Cardio + Yoga. It's the kind of workout that "let my body speak to me", or rather, "made me listen to my body." It's a great balance for other sports like running, cycling, swimming or anything type of sport.
I hope Core Fusion makes it way to the Bay Area soon, but in the mean time, I can't wait to try out the other DVD workouts in the series.