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F45’s new yoga, Pilates and tone class FS8 is launching

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Opening his very own FS8 gym, iconic Aussie surfer Mick Fanning talks us through EVERYTHING you need to know about this brand new wellness workout from one of the fastest-growing fitness franchises in the world.

There’s a new player in the fitness game and it will make you reconsider your weekly gym spend. Fitness juggernaut F45 has today launched FS8, a multi-modality workout that combines the benefits of yoga, Pilates and tone into one circuit-based (you guessed it) 45 minute workout.

Why FS8? The ‘F’ stands for functional (because every element has been designed to work together), the ‘S’ is for style (remixing pilates, yoga and tone in a new way) and the ‘8’ represents the eight key modalities that form the core of FS8.

Former Australian professional surfer and three-time World Champion, Mick Fanning has been unveiled as the face of FS8 (in fact, he’s so on board with the brand he’s opening his own studio in Byron).

Having practiced yoga for over two decades, he’s excited for others to experience what FS8 has to offer in one of the 50 plus studios planned to open across Australia this year.

“I started doing yoga over 20 years ago now. I’ve probably done Pilates for around the last 10 years. It’s definitely something where I tried, even when I was competing on tour, to try and get a session or two each week from each of those disciplines,” he tells Body+Soul.

“You go to a Pilates or yoga class and that’s all you do. I really like the blend of it all with FS8. I’ve always tried to incorporate a whole bunch of different things in my training so this is perfect for me. I can just go in and do three different disciplines in 45 minutes to get back to surfing or the family.”

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So, how similar is it to F45?

Fanning explains that it’s similar to F45 because it is circuit based and within a ¾ hour time frame, but the movements are very different.

It’s a lot more low impact, using stretch and tone movements with rather than using heavy weights and explosive movement.

“It’s more about concentrating on your body,” he says.

Equipment-wise, there’s reformer machines and Pilates rings on the circuit. Adding in the tone element, there’s also low weights and bands available as well. However the focus with this workout is on the body rather than fitness gear or machines.

The good news for those who find F45 too intense is that FS8 is a lot less high impact. It will still improve your fitness and tone your body without a lot of stress on your muscles and joints.

“It’s not like going and jumping on a treadmill. It’s more about low impact movement and training. For me, it’s about getting strength and length and then also toning up the body,” Fanning adds.

Sounds like the perfect middle ground.

‘Less ommm and more oomph’

FS8 combines the fitness benefits of yoga and Pilates but it aims to have a more innovative approach than is often available at local gyms. Billed as a trailblazer in the “wellness space” rather than pure fitness, FS8 draws from a library of 2,800 exercises that create a varied full-body workout in a results-based and community-oriented program.

However, this workout is less focused on the meditation and holistic factors that many come to enjoy about yoga practice.

“Because you’ve only got a 45 minute class, you’re just trying to get through the programme,” explains Fanning.

“Obviously you’ve got to concentrate through all the movements. The breathing and the mindfulness is still really needed, especially in different poses. But it’s not a yoga class that’s very ‘namaste-ish’. It’s definitely not that.”

How to combine it into your exercise regime

Fanning explains that FS8 is a workout that can be done daily because it’s not so stressful on the body.

“When you’re going to the gym and you’re pumping iron – it can be heavy impact and take a fair bit out of you. FS8 is something that you could do daily if you want to, I know a lot of people do yoga and Pilates daily. But it’s totally up to you and how your body feels,” he says.

You don’t need to do both F45 and FS8, but you should get some variation into your weekly regime.

“I don’t do F45, I just do FS8. I sort of get my cardio elsewhere, out in the ocean. I’m sure it does help [to do other types of HIIT workouts] but it’s not necessary.”

“It’s something that I’ve done throughout my career, just sort of blending everything together at the right times for me,” he explains.

It’s pretty accessible to different levels of fitness

The benefit of FS8 as opposed to other circuit-style workouts is that it’s designed to support and strengthen the body.

“It’s something you won’t walk away from being too sore. Obviously the first couple of classes you’ll feel some new muscles being turned on, that just means your body is working,” Fanning says.

“A lot of the basis around yoga, tone and Pilates, as you know, is trying to make sure that the body is working in the right way and getting space into the joints.”

Mick’s top tips for getting started?

Breathing. He explains that focusing on breathing can help you out with any challenge you face – on a wave, in a workout – in daily life.

He also suggests that participants focus on doing the best they can and not trying to overexert themselves in classes. Walk your own race.

“It’s always daunting, starting with a new fitness program but the biggest thing is just taking that first step. Find out what you want to do and just take that first step,” he says.

“That’s the beauty of fitness and training, you sort of get addicted to it. So once you get past the first bit, it’ll all start flowing together step by step, and you’ll hopefully find something that you love.

Where can you try it out?

FS8 is a separate franchise to F45 so will be run out of separate studios. Eight are now open across the country including Port Melbourne, South Yarra, Noosa, Newstead, Chatswood, Manly, Sydney CBD and Willetton.

A further 50 flagship studios are expected to open throughout Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia in 2021.

Find out more on the FS8 website.

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