We tried a Goop-approved, invite-only trampoline workout class
When we heard that Gwyneth Paltrow’s wellness website Goop was promoting an invite-only workout class in New York City, we were intrigued. When we learned it revolved around personal miniature trampolines, we had to try it.
According to its website, the ness (lower-case only) is an “intimate oasis where fit [ness] meets your [ness]”. It is also a workout studio located on the border of Tribeca and Chinatown, where we spent 50 minutes after work one evening panting and bouncing to the beat of blaring music.
Our journey to wellness the Goop way began after confirming our attendance for a 6.45pm class with the help of the ness co-founder Dria Murphy, who started the company alongside Aly Giampolo and Colette Dong.
We chose to attend a Bounce class, a beat-based, low-impact cardio workout, rather than a Sculpt class, which focuses on muscle sculpting and sounded tougher.
When we arrived at the studio, after travelling downtown and up three flights of stairs, we were pleased to find it dimly lit but also bustling with energy.
the ness is designed to be zen
The zen-like design is intentional, according to Dong, who explained: "We were inspired by the relaxed vibe of a boho style but wanted something a little more clean and contemporary. We got there by mixing a lot of textures, like hard dark stone and brick with softer elements like green velvet and golden stalks. The windows were a major draw for us and really make the space. There is nothing better than working out in natural light. In NYC, it is such a privilege and a treat to work out in a beautiful space with tons of light. That’s how we want people to feel - gratitude for their circumstance and the bodies that take them through class."
After we checked in, we were shown to our trampoline and introduced to our instructor for the night, Jessica Aronoff, who showed us how to assume the correct bouncing position - a squat, but on the trampoline.
As the 11 other attendees warmed up around us, we assumed that the class would be relatively easy. We were wrong.
When Aronoff took her place in front of us on a trampoline of her own and proceeded to teach us a series of moves, jumps and routines, all while maintaining perfect posture and beat, we realised just how rigorous of a workout bouncing actually is.
If you can remember breathlessly bouncing on a trampoline when you were young, and then imagine tripling that exertion, you can get a good idea of what a Bounce class is like.
While we managed to keep up in the beginning, when it came to balancing on one foot while bouncing, we struggled.
For those moments when we couldn’t manage to gather our balance enough not to fall off the trampoline, of which there were quite a few, we resumed our starting position and bounced along to the music.
By the halfway point, we were dripping with sweat, but also found we couldn’t stop grinning. Whether it was the endorphins or the sheer fun of bouncing around, we’re not sure.
However, by the 40-minute mark, when we began to cramp on our right side, we were ready to give up and leave.
We managed to bounce the rest of the way, a feat which we were quite proud of, before winding down with a series of ab workouts and stretches.
The workout ends with a series of stretches
It turns out adding a trampoline base to typical crunches, which are boring and stale, makes the exercise somewhat more-bearable.
At the end of the class, we congratulated ourselves with a well-earned glass of water and a refreshing spritz of facial mist, which the ness has arranged near the reception area.
While we had contemplated ways to leave early during the actual class, we found we had a remaining bounce in our step for an hour after the class as we walked home - which had turned into soreness by the next day.
We took a selfie with The Ness co-founder Dria Murphy
Overall, we really liked the ness and found that the high-intensity and speed of the workout made the time go by fast. Aronoff and her genuine happiness at teaching the class also helped.
And while we’d usually avoid a class that promises near-constant cardio for almost an hour, at the ness we found it was surprisingly tolerable - even fun.
We would, however, advise those who aren’t coordinated to skip the workout, as balance is definitely required.
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For those extended an invite to join the ness, membership costs $380-a-month for 15 classes, with the option to add unlimited additional classes for $20 each. If you don't want a full membership, classes cost $35 each.