(Photo courtesy of Equinox)

Reviews

Class Review: The Cut at Equinox

With a mix of cardio and strength training, this class packs a serious punch.

The Class: The Cut is a 45-minute boxing class created and led by Christa DiPaolo at Equinox.

The Appeal: I couldn’t resist the opportunity to attend a class instructed by the format’s creator. The Cut promises a “cardio-forward boxing workout with no bags, no wraps, and no ring.” I grabbed a boxing-savvy girlfriend for moral support and better boxing insight.

The Instructor: Christa DiPaolo, a Las Vegas native, grew up performing ballet, jazz, and tap at her mother’s dance studio. She later moved to Los Angeles to pursue a professional training career that led to her current passion: boxing.

The Space: We were in the main studio at the center of the Equinox gym. Two of the three walls are glass and open up to the ever-crowded weight area as well as the hallway to the locker rooms. We were on full display for most of the regulars to see.

Who’s There: This was a packed class that surprisingly varied widely in gender, age, and fitness level.

How It Went: As my workout partner and I grabbed our 2-pound weights, we shared a giggle and an eye roll as the lights dimmed and the song “Fight Night” by Migos set the mood. DiPaolo enthusiastically greeted the class and gave us a rundown of the format. We would complete five “rounds,” alternating cardio work and strength training. There were demonstrating instructors on either side of the crowded room so everyone could easily keep up. One of them even did a modified version of certain moves so those with injuries or limitations weren’t left out.

We spent the next 45 minutes in constant motion. DiPaolo’s routine fit her hip-hop sound track so perfectly it gave me goosebumps. (I’m a sucker for a killer gym playlist.) We did classic drills with burpees, squats, and plank jumps. Then moved through some core work, cardio, and boxing combos with our 2-pound weights that had me sweating and cursing my terrible coordination. I fell behind a few times, but I was able to recover and rejoin the group. When DiPaolo announced that “round five” was a cool-down, the entire class let out a sigh of relief.

The Aftermath: I felt fine the next day, but the following morning I felt like I had been hit by a truck. Every muscle in my lower body was sore for the rest of that week. (We attended class on a Tuesday.) My more experienced workout companion complained (in a good way).

Loved: DiPaolo’s energy is electric. She didn’t let up on us for one second and nearly did the entire workout herself as she instructed. We noted after class that she took the time to run through each series slowly several times, allowing everyone to easily keep up with the challenging sets. Much appreciated.

Hated: My frustrations were mostly with myself. I’ve only attempted to throw a proper punch a handful of times, so my combo transitions felt slow and clumsy.

Difficulty Level: This is an intense class. It moves fast and demands some serious coordination.

Bottom Line: The Cut is fun, thorough, and packs a major punch. (I burned around 680 calories, according to my heart rate monitor.) I think any fitness level could give it a shot, but if you’re looking to dip your toe into a new routine, consider this class the deep end.

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