modern gyms offer delightful ways to stay fit. Bharath Anuroop peeks into the novelties unfolding in these fitness studios
When Salman Khan bared his chest in Maine pyar kiya, the Gen-X hit the gym. Now that Shah Rukh flaunted his six-pack in Om Shanti Om, the Gen-Y is eager to toe the line of King Khan. The evolution of conventional gyms in Maine pyar kiya days to the plush and swanky multifarious fitness centres of Om Shanti Om era is a compelling tale of advancement.
Fitness buffs of yesteryear were perhaps not so blessed, as they hit gymnasiums only to pump iron. Calorie-watchers today have host of other facilities. Besides allowing them to sweat it out, the client-friendly centres give the option of viewing their favourite programme on the choicest channel even while working out. Be it a yoga session or a dance class, the music in the background sets a perfect mood for a great beginning of the day. A relaxing massage or a steam bath dovetails a vigorous workout session peppered with friendly yak among youngsters in the vicinity.
Single instructors have disappeared to make way for professional teams comprising a personal trainer, a dietician, a nutritionist and a physiotherapist. Flexible timing is yet another attraction that pulls even the uninitiated into the fold of these centres.
At Talwalkars, a hub of fitness freaks in the city, a steady stream of the health-conscious lot begins to pour in at 5 a.m. and the calorie-burning spree continues till 10 in the night.
“Kalyan Krishna, who represented Deccan Chargers in the IPL, includes our celebrity client list,” says Ch. Ravi Kumar, manager at Talwalkars. The centre offers fitness programmes for various age groups besides the stretch and flex programme for teenagers. Housewives throng the place to shed that extra flab and form a major chunk of the client list.
Since most of the happening gyms in the city import the equipment from the US and offer services of personal trainers, clients don’t mind shelling out a few extra bucks. The annual subscription costs anything between Rs.10,000 and Rs.15,000. For a personal trainer, the cost goes up as high as Rs. 40,000.
With the latest concept of six- pack and size zero creating a lot of buzz among the urban youth, experts suggest that what is attainable is desirable. “The fad has caught up with the youth and most of them come asking for a six-pack,” says T. Vikram, trainer at the Talwalkars. He was awarded the Mr. Andhra title in 2007 and was adjudged the State bodybuilding champion for five years. He has a six-pack but he warns youngsters against any short cuts. “Use of fat burners like shotgun, wave protein may have immediate effects but, in the long run, it leads to several complications,” he maintains.
Film stars have always inspired youngsters who want to emulate their demi-Gods. But, one thing is for sure. “Fitness awareness has certainly increased among people in the city over the years” observes V. Jogu Prasad, who runs Ice and Bubbles, yet another state-of-the-art fitness studio in the city. Irrespective of age, fitness has become a part of the city’s lifestyle.