Health & Fitness

7 Fresh Ways to Get Fit and Active in Malaysia

When you think about working out, what usually flashes across your mind? Is it the torturous hour on the treadmill where you’re constantly counting down every minute? Or the tear-inducing boredom on the stationary bike?

Most people dread exercising because they think it’s boring, or it’s tiring, or they just plain don’t like it. Granted, exercise can be boring and repetitive if you’re constantly doing the same thing in the gym.

But there’s no rule saying that you have to do this or that in order to give your body a good workout. What if we told you that working out could be fun and that you would actually be looking forward to it?

All you need to do is find something which suits your personality and trust us, instead of skipping workouts, you’ll be planning your day around it! And the best way to discover the best workout for you? Experiment, of course! Here are seven hot workouts currently trending in the Malaysian community:

1. Aerial Yoga

Ever thought about doing yoga in the air? Aerial yoga, or “flying yoga” as dubbed by some enthusiasts, is a way of doing yoga suspended in soft fabric hammocks.

What you’ll be doing

You’ll be spending your time stretching and soaring through different yoga poses with the help of a hammock.

What it does for you

Aerial yoga is actually a full body stretching workout which strengthens your muscles, gets your blood flowing and helps you with coordination and concentration.

Would it suit you?

It’s fun, that’s for sure. Imagine maneuvering through different yoga poses while in the air, but still knowing you’re safe thanks to the hammock. Aerial yoga is also relatively low impact and will be a great replacement to those who find traditional yoga difficult.

Where to find aerial yoga classes

2. Parkour

If you’ve been on the Internet for a while, chances are you’ve seen one of those extremely cool parkour videos where a guy / girl basically zips around a neighbourhood running, jumping, and climbing past obstacles instinctively. Parkour isn’t an activity made for stuntmen in the latest James Bond flick, but something that you too can master. Developed from military obstacle course training, the point of parkour is to get from point A to point B in the most efficient way possible.

What you’ll be doing

As a traceur (that’s what they call Parkour practitioners), you’ll learn different ways to look at objects and obstacles and how you can get around them. You’ll be running, jumping, crawling, balancing, and gliding over obstacles in your way. That bench, that wall, and everything else is your playground.

What it does for you

Because you’re constantly getting past obstacles, you’ll definitely be improving your agility. Parkour sessions are both mentally challenging as well as physically testing, so with enough training, you’ll become the master of your body and mind. You’ll find that doing parkour can also be great for your confidence. Constantly getting past hurdles will make you realise that they aren’t all that scary after all.

Would it suit you?

If you’re an adventure seeker and revel in challenges, parkour would definitely be a fun endeavor. You’ll be turning back the clock and becoming a kid again, testing your abilities and seeing how far you can jump, and how you can break a fall without hurting yourself. It’s during our time as kids that we learn our physical abilities, so parkour will help you jump out of that box you put yourself in.

Where to start parkouring

Next Phase

This is run by experienced free runners (similar to parkour) offering skill-based classes beginning from the basics like front rolls, cartwheels, front flips and more. You’ll need to join their group in order to access the class schedule.

  • Where: Lake Garden / Bukit Jalil Park

AOXM (Art of Extreme Movement)

AOXM (Art of Extreme Movement) is an indoor gym designed for parkour, freerunning, tricking and more. If you’re looking for a safe environment to figure parkour out, this would be a good fit.

  • Where: Bandar Sunway

3. Aerial Hoop Dance

Working your body while swinging on a metal hoop suspended off the ground? That’s what the aerial hoop dance is all about.

What you’ll be doing

You’ll be learning how to get onto the hoop, balance yourself, dance and spin around and get down from the hoop, all done gracefully, of course.

What it does for you

Despite how easy it looks, doing the aerial hoop dance actually requires you to develop strength, with some balance and flexibility peppered in. You’ll also need some guts to go with it, because being suspended off the ground with a metal hoop would probably seem pretty scary in the beginning. As you progress and learn how to maneuver around the hoop, you’ll come to love the exhilaration of gracefully swinging through the air.

Would it suit you?

If you’re bored of the regular gym routine, an aerial hoop class would definitely hook you out of your comfort zone.

Where to find aerial hoop dance classes

4. Trampoline Aerobics

In a previous article, we wrote about how you can burn up about 300-400 calories an hour just by jumping on a trampoline. Trampoline aerobics incorporates trampolining with aerobics and high energy music to help you work up a sweat, and some trampoline workouts can actually burn up to 1,000 calories per hour!

What you’ll be doing

Don’t be fooled into thinking this is going to be an easy stroll down the street. Jump aerobics is intense and will have you panting for air during each session. You’ll be bouncing up and down a trampoline net, but also doing various cardio moves at the same time.

What it does for you

You’ll be improving your balance, getting stronger bones, toning down your entire body, but having fun at the same time! Just a few weeks in and you’ll notice yourself panting less (better stamina), and feeling better!

Would it suit you?

Despite its intensity, because you’re working out on a trampoline, it’s a low impact exercise that won’t hurt your joints. If you’re looking for a new way to incorporate cardio into your routine, but don’t like running, swimming, jogging and other cardio activities, trampoline aerobics would be a fun stand-in.

Where to find trampoline aerobics classes

Jump Street Asia

5. Pole Dancing

If you’ve always associated pole dancing with strip clubs, you can stop now. Pole dancing is actually an art combining dance and acrobatics revolving around a vertical steel pole. It’s less about dancing seductively in front of a pole, and more about mastering your body and strength.

What you’ll be doing

You’ll usually start with the bare basics — floor-work, spins and climbs, building a strong founding before venturing towards the snazzy pole poses.

What it does for you

You’ll be strengthening your body like never before because pole dancing combines strength training, flexibility training, and endurance in each of its workouts. Most importantly, you get to build confidence about your abilities and get in touch with your feminity.

Would it suit you?

You don’t have to have great upper body strength or a sexy body to try out pole dancing. Instead, pole dancing classes will help you attain that upper body strength that you lack, and teach you how to appreciate your body as it is. It’s a great confidence booster and also a great workout.

Where to find pole dancing classes

6. Adventure Park

There’s a child in every adult. Ever thought of venturing into a gigantic park that’s filled with adventure and fitness challenging activities like rock climbing, go-karting, biking etc? Check out District 21, an Apocalypse themed action adventure park. Located in a 55ft air-conditioned atrium, within IOI City Mall, Putrajaya. Get a good dose of strength training, cardio and loads of fun at one go!

7. Indoor Rock Climbing

This sport is physically and mentally demanding. Rock climbing is more than climbing trees or monkey bars when you were young. It tests your strength, endurance, agility, balance and mental toughness.

What you’ll be doing

You’ll be climbing up artificial rock walls. Your goal will be to reach the summit of a formation of a pre-defined route without falling. You usually start from beginners’ route and slowly advance to more challenging routes.

What it does for you

Climbing uses both the upper and lower body that involves a lot of muscle groups. Even your fingers, shoulders and arms get a well workout! Regular climbing helps you improve stamina and muscle endurance. All the reaching and stretching will definitely help improve your flexibility and agility.

Would it suit you?

Just like pole dancing, you don’t have to have strong upper body strength to start. It’s a gradual journey and everyone starts as a beginner. If you are looking for an activity to improve muscle strength in your own pace and not too extreme, rock climbing might just be a good choice.

Where to find rock climbing classes

This article was brought to you by, Malaysia’s leading health community.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *