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Animal Flow: Hilltop Studio introduces new fitness trend

Animal Flow group class

Unleash your inner beast with Animal Flow, it’s body-weight training with a primal twist and is new to Hilltop Studio in the heart of Muswell Hill

Venue: Hilltop Studio
Class: Animal Flow workshop
Location: Muswell Hill, N10 3QR
Budget or blowout: £20 for 2-hour workshop

The fundamentals

Tucked just behind Sweaty Betty on Muswell Hill High Street lies a gorgeous boutique yoga space called Hilltop Studio. Flooded with natural light and spectacular views across London, Hilltop is the perfect space for anyone looking to workout in tranquility. Offering a range of classes from pregnancy yoga to pilates and specialised workshops, studio director Ali Schilling has managed to create the perfect community space.

Hilltop yoga studio

The low-down

Animal Flow is an innovative new movement founded by American fitness trainer Mike Fitch, which is designed to improve strength, flexibility, body control and coordination. Combining primal-inspired movements with body-weight training, this fun and challenging workout creates a fluid movement, much like Vinyasa flow.

Two women doing child's pose

After hearing about Animal Flow and the success of the studio’s first workshop, Vanessa and I were keen to try the dynamic entry-level class and learn more about this new fitness trend that’s about to take the UK by storm.

Group training and a lady doing downward dog pose

Our instructor Edita explained how all movements and transitions stem from Ape, Beast and Crab – the ABC of Animal Flow. Once you’ve mastered these basics moves, a flow can be built around them. The sequences can get faster and more advanced as you learn, and yes… you really are learning the poses and movements of the world’s most powerful creatures!

Animal flow ape pose

We started the class with some wrist mobilisations and stretches. Using a hard rubber ball, we concentrated on releasing tension in our wrists and forearms because most of the class is spent resting your body-weight on your hands and wrists.

Edita taught us the key moves one-by-one, slowly building up to a choreographed sequence. We introduced moves such as the Bear, Sidekick, Loaded Beast and the Scorpion. We soon felt the burn in our quads, arms and core as the key to this primal-inspired movement is to keep your knees and hips from resting on the floor.

By the end of the two-hour session we had worked our entire body, had a giggle with some fellow fitness fans and had perfected a full sequence of Animal Flow moves.

Group shot of women doing Animal Flow poses

After the workout, the lovely ladies at Sweaty Betty popped in to give us a juicy discount for the Muswill Hill branch and Ali treated us to Planet Organic snacks, while we chatted about the best local brunch spots. What more could you want on a sunny Saturday morning?

The verdict

If you’re looking for something to make your workouts interesting again then this class is for you. I must admit, I did make the mistake of thinking that body-weight training would be easy without using any additional weights, oh how wrong I was! We really enjoyed Animal Flow and it made an interesting alternative to yoga with the added twist of being super toning for your body.

Animal Flow sidekick pose

Keep an eye out for the next installment of Animal Flow at Hilltop Studios coming soon. Ali hosts a full timetable of classes so be sure to check out hilltop-studio.co.uk – we can’t wait to head back for some sunrise yoga.

Kat & Vanessa x


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