The sweatiest fitness classes

We got wet in gyms all over the city to determine which offer the sweatiest fitness classes.

Illustration: Hawk Krall

RECOMMENDED: Fitness guide to NYC

Cardio Pump

Bodystrength Fitness, 250 W 106th St at Broadway (212-316-3338, First class $10, thereafter $18; memberships and class cards available.
News flash: Dance, boxing and step classes don’t need to have confusing, complicated sequences to be an excellent workout—or a butt-blasting good time. This hour-long class cheerfully combines all three, plus push-ups, triceps dips, sit-ups and stretching. Bring a towel (or rent one for $1)—once things get going, two ACs plus several ceiling fans can’t keep up with the heat generated by a dozen movin’, groovin’ bodies.
Water consumed: 24 ounces

Heaven & Hell

Club H Fitness, 423 W 55th St between Ninth and Tenth Aves (212-245-5802, Free for gym members, nonmembers $35.
Instructor Courtney looks more like a god than the devil, which is the only conceivable reason that heaven gets a tout in the name of this fast-paced, multiple-rep weight-training class. Some of the highlights (lowlights?) include two one-minute sets of push-ups—at the beginning and the end of class—plus two sets of ten in the middle, and two sets of 20 jumping jacks while doing shoulder presses using weights. Things really warm up when the class leaves the room to do lunge-walks (while carrying hand weights) down the gym hallway and back...three times. Even the necessary cold shower afterward won’t put out the fire in your limbs.
Water consumed: 24 ounces

Hot Vinyasa

New York Yoga HOT, 132 E 85th St at Lexington Ave (212-439-YOGA, $23 per class, mat and towel rental extra, packages available.
What if you moved your typical mindful yoga practice of sun salutations, downward dogs and warrior poses into a room heated to 105 degrees with 30 to 40 percent humidity? Mix it up for 90 minutes, and you get astonishingly limber muscles—and so much perspiration, you’ll want to wring yourself out (that is, if the twisting poses hadn’t done it already).
Water consumed: 32 ounces


Sports Club LA, 330 E 61st St between First and Second Aves (212-355-5100, Free for gym members, nonmembers $35.
This class is like going for a group run but without the annoyance of dodging pedicabs (irritation comes in a purely physical form). Participants claim a treadmill, then follow the commands of the instructor to speed up, slow down, increase or decrease incline, or sprint it out. The “hills” are especially challenging, particularly when you’re instructed to “race to the top” (i.e., increase your speed). As one treader put it, “This is so much harder than when I run by myself!”
Water consumed: 16 ounces


Aerospace High Performance Center, 332 W 13th St between Eighth Ave and Hudson St (212-929-1640, First day pass $20, day rate thereafter $40, monthly and annual memberships available.
A half hour of jump rope sounds simple—kids do it at the playground all the time—but when you’re made to perform some fancy footwork (one foot at a time, double jumps and other skips that defy written explanation) set to the beat of thumping dance music, you’ll quickly remember: You’re not a kid anymore. Yeah, they don’t call the rope the “rainmaker” for nothing (although “calf-cramp inducer” might be more appropriate). Insider tip: Hang toward the back of the room to catch a slight, but much appreciated, breeze created by everyone else’s whipping ropes.
Water consumed: 16 ounces

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