28 Jun Our Take on F45 – What Is It And Is It For Me?
Everyone is talking about the new gym studios known as F45.
So here is a quick snapshot on what it is, and our take on it’s usefulness and safety.
What is F45?
F45 stands for Functional 45 minutes. It’s a high intensity workout that changes every day. All equipment can be pushed to the side, allowing for a constantly changing workout. Each day the same workout is done for all F45 studio. There are 1-2 trainers instructing on technique and keeping motivation high, and the exercises and time clocks are displayed on TVs around the Studio.
Where did it come from?
It began as a single studio in Sydney, which founder and former Investment Banker equities trader Rob Deutsch and his partner Adam Gilchrist (not the cricketer) transformed into a franchise and expanded into over 900 studios in just 4 years! Amazing business skills – great work guys!
How is it Different to CrossFit?
If you think it sounds like CrossFit, you’d be right, but there are a number of key differences. Firstly, the environment in a CrossFit Box often becomes competitive with scoring and can be quite a macho environment, which some women find intimidating. F45 has no mirrors and no scoring (apart from the optional quarterly ‘Play Offs”) and the atmosphere in a class is more of people trying to help each other get through it rather than beat an opponent. F45’s motto is ‘Team Training, Life Changing’ and many classes have more females than males. There is a greater emphasis on technique in F45, but the quality of the instructor is always critical and variable.
Is it Safe?
Both F45 and CrossFit have developed a reputation for having a high injury risk. But don’t be too alarmed. Due to the less competitive environment in a F45 studio and knowledgeable trainers there tends to be less emphasis on lifting maximal weight and maximal effort and more focus on technique. We are big fans of the warm ups (and have a sneaky suspicion they have consulted a physiotherapist) as there are some simple but great exercises in there to help prepare the body for the work-out and prevent injuries.
Should I give F45 a try?
For Sure! All movement and training comes with some risk of injury, but the reward of getting fitter and healthier far out-weighs the risk. Just ensure to increase your attendance and efforts slowly, to allow your body to adapt! Unfortunately F45 has yet to open in Japan, but there are rumours of studios opening soon.
Can I do F45 if I have a slight injury?
Make sure you arrive early and to let the trainer(s) know about your injury and get them to suggest alternative exercises at stations that will stress your injury too much.
Injured Shoulder: Avoid lifting above the head and out to the side if the body
Back Pain: Avoid Lifting heavy dead-lifts or weights from the floor. Ensure core is engaged when using ropes and lifting free-weights
Neck Pain: Only very light weights above the head, no pull-ups and in more painful cases cease bouncing and jumping exercises.
Knees: Consult a physiotherapist as exercises will be specific to injury
Ankles: Hopping and Jumping exercises can be replaced with balance based exercises.
Begin carefully but we say go for it!