One of the new entries in the ever-expanding fitness landscape of New York City is Rowgatta – a combination rowing and strength training class. You might call it Barry’s Bootcamp meets rowing — and it fits right in with the popular HIIT style workouts that combine cardio intervals on a treadmill, heavy bag, or rower, with resistance training that’s centered around a custom designed step bench.
At Rowgatta, it’s a CrossFit reminiscent “FITBENCH” — complete with dumbbells, kettlebells, a slam ball, and resistance bands. Like Barry’s, Orange Theory, Rumble, and others in this category, Rowgatta features a night-club inspired design, colored mood lighting, and a pumping sound system. If you’re a fan of the formula, and prefer rowing over boxing or running, Rowgatta is for you!
Barry’s Bootcamp opened in 1998 and popularized High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) in a group setting. HIIT style classes are a fun, efficient, and effective way to get in shape — offering maximal results in minimal time. You get all the benefits of cardio and strength training in one 50-minute class. High Intensity Interval Training also generates a physiological reaction known as EPOC – Excess Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption – and these total body workouts are proven to offer continual calorie and fat burning up to 36 hours after the workout is done.
What started with Barry’s Bootcamp and the treadmill, has taken off and launched the opening of a host of other HIIT studios across the country. Boxing workouts like Rumble and GRIT BXNG have added or replaced the treadmill with heavy bags (water-filled, rubber boxing bags). LIT Method and now Rowgatta, have added rowing into the mix. No matter your cardio preference, there is a HIIT class for you. Here’s our guide to the most popular:
HIIT WORKOUTS: TREADMILL
BARRY’S BOOTCAMP. The original HIIT workout, Barry’s Bootcamp remains one of the most popular boutique fitness studios with a cult-like following and locations around the world. Boasting 1000 calories burned per 50-minute class, the workout alternates between the treadmill (Woodways) and the floor, with running or walking intervals and circuit-style strength training rounds. Each day at Barry’s is dedicated to a different body part like Arms & Abs or Butt & Legs, although you’ll always get a full body workout with the core focus of the moves.
RUMBLE TRAINING. New from Rumble Boxing is Rumble Training, which knocks out the punches but hits the treads! This 10-round, 45-minute workout alternates between the treadmill and floorwork with running drills and strength-building exercises on custom designed apparatus. From the distinctive Rumble bench which contains all your equipment, to the Techno Gym treadmill with its touch screen and Nintendo-like design controls – if you’re a Rumble fan it’s a great way to mix it up your workouts, and overall a fun new entry into the fitness ring.
ORANGE THEORY. With studio locations across the country, Orange Theory is a 60-minute workout that’s like a whole bunch of classes rolled into one. With both treadmills and WaterRowers, it also incorporates TRX and Bosu, along with weights, into the strength training rounds. The class focus rotates between power, strength, and endurance. Exercises are displayed on video monitors, with variations for different fitness levels, so there is always a visual reference for optimal form. Orange Theory is heart rate-based interval training – the target being the fat-burning Orange Zone that boosts metabolism and keeps burning calories for up to 36 hours after the workout is done.
HIIT WORKOUTS: BOXING
RUMBLE. Instead of treadmill intervals, this boxing meets Barry’s Bootcamp workout alternates rounds of jab, cross, hook, uppercut combinations with strength training. The bags are rubber, so it’s easy on the hands and there is a nice kick back. The 50-minute class alternates between cardio and high intensity floor work, with weights, plyometrics, and other full body moves centered around a custom step bench. The studio design is of note and made for Instagram: from the all white boxing gloves, to the Keith Haring inspired graphics, to the Basquiat reproduction in the lobby.
GRIT BXNG. This Rumble meets Barry’s Bootcamp hybrid combines boxing, treadmill, and strength training intervals into one action-packed 50-minute workout. Founded by Pitbull (hip-hop superstar), Tony Robbins (renowned motivational speaker), and Bill Zanker (Founder of The Learning Annex), GRIT BXNG is a Vegas-style fitness studio, with a multi-million dollar music and lighting system — and even a full liquor bar for post-workout cocktails!
SHADOWBOX. Though there are no specific weight stations per se, Shadowbox fits the mold in that the workout alternates between boxing and strength training rounds – and like Rumble, the design of the studio is a huge part of the draw. A light flooded, street level studio welcomes you, staged with a whitewashed ring. The vibe changes as you enter a cool, dimly blue lit room, hung with about 40 heavy bags, on and around which class takes place. The 45-minute workout is broken down into 3-minute rounds of intense shadowboxing and heavy bag work — with total body moves like push-ups, planks, jumping jacks, and burpees thrown in the sweaty mix.
HIIT WORKOUTS: ROWING
LIT METHOD. This LA-based rowing workout is located in a beautifully designed, lofty studio. Spot-lit WaterRowers are the focal point, paired with custom designed resistance band stations. Hanging from the ceiling are TRX and elastics — all of which get utilized in this super-charged 50-minute workout. Class moves from exercise to exercise, alternating between rowing and strength — targeting every body part at a pace that guarantees a big cardio burn too.
ROWGATTA. The newest entry into the category is Rowgatta, and swaps the treadmill for Concept 2 rowers in this 50-minute workout. Rowing is a full-body workout unto itself, in which 86% of your muscles are engaged with each stroke — burning more calories than any other form of cardio endurance training. The class uses calories as the metrics, for a base, push, and sprint pace for the two 10-minute rowing intervals, which alternate with two 10-minute circuit training blocks of upper and lower body work at the FITBENCH station. Rowgatta uniquely features a community space with an area to warm-up and cool-down – complete with Trigger Point foam rollers, lacrosse balls, and even Theraguns!
CITY ROW. The original rowing workout, City Row classes integrate intervals on the WaterRower with strength training on the floor. It’s a non-stop 50-minute, high-intensity, total body workout that alternates between speed and power rowing intervals, and functional training moves likes planks, squats, and lunges. City Row now has multiple studios in cities across the country, but the sunlight filled Flatiron studio in NYC is hard to beat!