Who doesn't want a perkier butt? So when New York Sports Club invited us to try their new "Brazilian Carnival Butt Blast" class, we jumped (or should we say squat jumped!) at the chance. The workout is inspired by the intense preparations dancers do before Carnival, a three-day festival in February that is the biggest holiday of the year in Brazil. Our instructor, Sebastian Morel-Ferreira, informed us that the headpieces and costumes Carnival dancers wear can add more than 65 pounds to your frame, so some serious core and all-around strength work is a must!
Throughout the 45-minute class, freelance editorial assistant Samantha and I used step benches, weighted barbells and our somewhat rusty dance skills to try out a day in the life of a Carnival queen. We began and wrapped up our routine with a Zumba-style dance, and hit the weights hard during the workout, doing moves like a weighted lunge with our back leg elevated on the step for one-minute intervals. But our favorite moves were near the end when we grabbed a mat and really targeted our hips, thighs and butt.
Here are two of our favorite moves that you can try at home, modeled by Samantha herself!
- Rainbow (Top row of pictures): On hands and knees, extend one leg straight behind you with toe pointed. Slowly draw an upside down "U" (or rainbow) shape with the pointed toe, stopping right before your foot hits the floor. Repeat motion to return to starting position, continue for one minute.
- Fire Hydrant (Bottom row of pictures): On hands and knees, extend one leg straight behind you with toe pointed. Pull the knee of that leg toward your elbow (you should feel your hips and obliques working here too). Hold for one count and extend leg back out. Continue for one minute.
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The class will be offered exclusively at the Rockefeller Center NYSC location through this fall. Visit mysportsclub.com for more information.