Lifestyle Health

Tuesday 20 February 2018

Pilates with a punch

Alison O'Riordan talks to model and former miss Ireland Holly carpenter about Piloxing – the new fat-torching craze sweeping Hollywood

Holly Carpenter is a fan of piloxing. Photo: El Keegan
Holly Carpenter is a fan of piloxing. Photo: El Keegan

Alison O'Riordan

Holly Carpenter is a strong supporter of piloxing, which has been hailed as the hottest fittest trend for 2014. Huge in America at the moment, piloxing has become the latest Hollywood celebrity fitness craze.

It uniquely mixes Pilates, dance and boxing into a fat-torching and muscle-sculpting workout guaranteed to whip you into shape.

While the class is fun, at the same time it is challenging and the striking brunette has only positive things to say.

"I've tried Pilates before and I've done a bit of boxing and I've really enjoyed getting taught piloxing," she said. "It's like when you're in a yoga position and trying to hold it, there are a lot of slow movements and you have to maintain that balance, but it also has that edge where you have got the boxing gloves.

"It's good for people who like to mix it up and for those who get bored of going to the gym, with something like piloxing you get to do a bit of both."

Weighted gloves add to the workout by toning the arms and improving cardiovascular health. At the same time, it blends the power, speed and agility of boxing with the flexibility of Pilates.

"I broke out in a sweat doing it and was worried I would have sweat patches in the pictures because it looks like you're not working as you're just holding a position, but it's really burning.

"My favourite style of training is interval training so I would rather be put on the rower and told to go as fast as I can for 30 seconds, get a 30-second break and go again and do this for up to 10 minutes. I like to get things done quickly and get my heart rate going so it was really interesting for me to do something so slow where you can also feel that same kind of burn.

"I feel a lot of women would really like it," said the former 2011 Miss Ireland who trains five times a week, for 40 minutes a session with her trainer Sophie Kavanagh from No 17 Personal Training on Merrion Square.

Piloxing is the brainchild of Swedish dancer and celebrity trainer Viveca Jensen, who is on a mission to physically empower women through fitness, something the top model can identify with.

"I feel it makes you empowered as it has that edge where it's not too soft. I have been in yoga classes before where it's very relaxing and very nice to crack my body back into shape, but you almost miss that aggressive edge or something to get you going that bit more," said the lean and leggy model who enjoys keeping on top of new trends in the fitness industry.

"The woman who has brought piloxing over is the same woman who brought Zumba to Ireland, so that seemed to be quite a big hit for a lot of people – so if she is going to do the same with piloxing then we probably will see a lot of it."

The Britain and Ireland's Next Top Model finalist also mentions how her idol, Victoria Secret's Angel and Brazilian model Adriana Lima, is a boxing fan.

"Adriana Lima would box and then there a lot of other women who are big fans of Pilates, so to mix the two is a clever move.

"I think one needs to find those things they enjoy which will always get you going back and I think this is a cool thing for women to try as its new and different. I encourage women to try it as it combines two things that are really popular."

So how does the catwalk beauty, who is currently working on her blog, feel about being a brand ambassador for Always Infinity which have been specially designed to fit in with one's active lifestyle?

"Always Infinity is one of Procter & Gamble's brands so anything involved with P&G is always very well marketed and they protect their brands so it is nice to be involved with something so feminine and something none of us should be embarrassed about as it's only natural.

"Piloxing is all about flexibility so that's why it's linked with Always Infinity because it's about being comfortable, but also being flexible as well."

Irish Independent

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