For a while now, I've heard about a fitness trend that claims to give you a hardcore workout in the half the time it would usually take. With celebrity fans like Madonna and Kylie Minogue, the Power Plate has become popular with anyone who's strapped for time but wants to maintain fitness.
This is why it makes a great exercise for mums. Workouts start out at around 25 minutes, and can minimise cellulite and improve muscles. It focuses a lot of attention on the core muscles, in particular the pelvic floor muscles, which can help new mums who may be struggling with bladder issues post-labour.
I was recently given the opportunity to try out the Power Plate studio in Harrods with a couple of friends. Power Plate classes can be found across the country, but this studio is their central location.
As someone who avoids exercise like the plague, I was nervous about approaching such a hardcore workout. However, our trainer Michael was friendly and welcoming without being patronising, and asked us plenty of questions to make sure he knew exactly what we all wanted to achieve.
You start the workout with a short run through of what areas of your body you want to work on, and a brief understanding of the machines. Classes only have 3-4 people, so they're informal and relaxed, and you get plenty of one-to-one advice. You then work through a number of moves on the vibrating power plate, which you hold for 30-60 seconds.
Some of the exercises are tricky, but most of them are simple and doable for most levels of fitness. Michael gave advice on how to optimise results, and advised us to relax for a couple of seconds if we really struggled. The workout is finished with a 'massage' using the stronger vibration setting. Laying down with your calves on the plate at this setting is a little slice of heaven.
The workout lasted 25 minutes, and I would happily have worked out for a little longer. Whilst you don't feel the results straight away, I've definitely felt my muscles over the last couple of days.
Overall, I loved this workout. It might not burn the number of calories a run on the treadmill will, but it'll tone you up and improve the appearance of your cellulite within a few sessions. Classes aren't cheap, but there are plenty of deals around at the moment to try a class for free, giving you a chance to try before you buy.
You can find your local Power Plate studio or gym on their website.
ParentView score: 5/5