A class in full swing at ElliptiFit. (Anne Cusack / Los Angeles…)
If you were trying to conjure up a perfect group cardio workout, it just might look like one of the classes at ElliptiFit.
Classes at the boutique fitness studio in Los Angeles offer a low-impact, full-body workout. There's upbeat music. Individualized instruction. It's all over in a brisk 45 minutes. And, best of all, classes take place under low lights, so you don't have to worry about sticking out like a sore thumb if you've never seen an elliptical machine before, much less danced with one.
ElliptiFit is the brainchild of owner and head fitness instructor Annette Comerchero, who says her goal was "the best possible workout you can get, in the shortest amount of time possible, having the most fun."
Check, check and check.
The classes take place almost entirely on low-impact elliptical machines, which mimic walking or running but without all the joint stress.
Classes start with a warm-up and stretching before launching into cardio and intervals that involve ramping up the machine's incline, speed and even direction. (Want to set your butt on fire? Try powering the elliptical backward.) Instructors have a seemingly endless bag of tricks for adding variety. Alternating between pushing and pulling the hand levers to power the machine help make it a full-body workout, and there are ab movements added in as well. A cool-down is followed by a few minutes of stretching off the machine.
It's not unusual to see never-been-on-an-elliptical beginners taking classes alongside triathletes. There's no pressure to keep up with jackrabbits.
"I don't like a class that puts pressure on people," Comerchero said. "Sometimes, you've had a bad day or a bad week and you just want a light, energizing workout. Sometimes, you want a much more intense workout so that you're sweating at the end and feel like 'Wow, I did that.' This is a class that allows for all those experiences."
A single class is $21. There are discount packages available, and a two-week introductory special offers unlimited classes for $45.
An ElliptiFit workout would be a fun way to spend a Saturday morning with fitness-minded friends, followed by a cup of coffee or tea. And you'll no doubt learn some moves to take back to your own gym.
ElliptiFit, 11870 Santa Monica Blvd., No. 207, L.A., (323) 400-5348. Classes daily.
We're determined to make 2013 the year we stick to our health and fitness goals by taking small, simple steps toward ditching empty calories and finding ways to keep exercise fun. Share your tips and suggestions, such as other classes we should check out, by using #LATFit on Twitter and Instagram, or via email. See more tips at latimes.com/LATFit.