Step: Not just for nanas

As part of my new gym routine, I do an hour’s Step class on wednesday evenings.

I was trying to fit some kind of activity into every day, and the only class I could make it to after work that day was Step, so I thought I’d give it a go. When I first signed up, I imagined it was going to be run by a nice little old lady called Doris, and look like a real life version of the Rosemary Conley VHSs of my mums that I used to attempt at about 9 years old.

I genuinely could not have been more wrong.

The instructor wears overly complex and stylish sports bras, has half her head shaved and is just fully mental.

She’s almost definitely not actually mental, but her energy levels are ludicrous for half 7 on a midweek evening and don’t let up until the final seconds of class. She shouts, she whoops, she claps, she dances about – initially I was baffled, but now I just bloody love it. Step is now one of the highlights of my week – especially when I finally nail all three routines in a row and feel like a pro.

The class is split into five parts: warm up, three different choreographed step routines and then a warm down. I’ve been going for a few weeks now, and generally two out of the three routines are the same each week, with a new one being introduced every now and again which keeps everyone on the same page if you’ve only just signed up for the classes, and don’t know any of the steps at all.

There’s one move that features in every class – a mambo, cha-cha-cha. Which means you, er, mambo away from your step to either the left or right, and then cha-cha-cha back to your starting position. Even typing that out I’m cringing, which is how I felt in my first class every time we did it, but now I’m mambo’ing with the best of ’em. Honestly, the only way to really enjoy a step class is to just get over yourself, forget about what you’re doing and get stuck in. There’s a different class right after Step so there’s often a little crowd gathering outside the studio for the last 5 or so minutes of the class and we must look like right wallies mambo’ing about and clapping ourselves like maniacs. Plus our instructor (I do know her name, obviously, but name checking her would feel like I was trying to be her mate (I TOTALLY AM, PLEASE LOVE ME P!) so, err..) says “MAAMBOOOOOOO!” in the world’s most energetic way so it’s hard not to get carried away.

SO yeah, moral of the story is: try everything at the gym at least once, and you might end up with a new favourite class.