Our most FAQs. Have one that’s not on here? Email us!
- What do you do in your workouts?
- How much is training?
- Should I do Group, Small Group, or Private Training?
- What should I wear and bring?
- How many sessions a week should I do?
- Do I have to go barefoot?
- What kind of people train at Gymnasium?
- Are you good cross training for running, biking, or swimming?
- Are you good cross-training for …. ?
- Are you a kettlebell studio?
- I won’t get bulky, right?
- Do you do cardio?
- When is your ab toning and bun lifting class?
- How can I change my (insert undesirable body part here) as fast as possible?
- What’s the best exercise for my core?
- Are you like Yoga?
- Are you like Crossfit?
- What diet do you recommend?
What do you do in your workouts?
Each workout is complete. Each session builds strength, stamina, mobility, and movement ability. We’re not a once-size-fits-all training or a follow-the-leader bootcamp/group-ex class. We workout as a team with a coach/trainer. Workouts vary based on the day, the current training cycle, and who is in the room (both the members and the trainer). We crawl, throw, lift, run, jump, roll, balance, climb, squat, swing, punch, kick and more. We train people to be naturally lean, super able, and healthy.
We design workouts around our 10 Abilities of Fitness and the Complete Movement Diet. We cycle the workouts day-to-day, and the pattern emphasis each cycle. This allows you to maintain a smart level of intensity and get progressively more able without over-training, or adding body mileage. In fact, many bodies experience their old aches and injuries recede when their strength, mobility, and movement skills improve. Whatever it is you do, if you need a PT, a chiropractor, a massage therapist, and rolls of kinesiotape, multiple braces, and daily rehab sequences just to continue training…(ahem)…you’re doing it wrong We’re not content to be incredible “when I was…”–we want you to be invincible today and for all the todays to come.
Want to learn more about our training approach? Check these out:
Should I do Group, Small Group, or Private Training?
Which sessions you choose depends on your preference, ability, availability, and level. Some people prefer a mix of session types. Some people start with more guidance and then move to less guidance once they’ve souped up their ability. Some stick with the type they like best.
Group: level II: Up to 15 people.
Who am I?
- Somewhat active: run/bike/multi-sports, vigorous classes, weight lifting, climbing, ski/snowboard, dance, martial arts, team sports
- No serious injuries or current physical constraints (recent surgery, etc.)
- Perform most movements without pain or fear of it
- Are able to learn and perform movement well without a lot of supervision or modification
- Comfortable in a group dynamic
Small Group: levels I & 2: 1-5 people.
Who am I?
- Been inactive for a while
- Mostly pain free, but lack of strength, stamina and movement confidence
- Have a lot of changes to make (strength and ability, weight loss, etc.)
- Have past mileage/injuries that you are concerned about aggravating
- Like appreciate team motivation and accountability, but want more hands-on attention
- Want more training options each week
One trainer and one client (or 2 if you wish to work with a friend or partner), 30 minutes or 60 minutes. Schedule is set with your trainer or trainers. Who am I?
- Want weight loss coaching
- Want personalized training and attention to details and form
- Want sport specific performance training
- Want some help with technique or sticking points to support group training
- Recently finished PT, recovering from injuries or physical roadblocks (recent surgery, etc.)
***If you aren’t sure where you fit, email us a little bit about you and your goals and we’ll schedule a free consult.***
Bring a yoga mat and a water bottle. Both will be used in just about every training session.
1x week will help improve your movement ability and shake the cobwebs out.
2x week is the minimum to build any noticeable momentum toward changes in your body and ability.
3x week is where you’ll start to notice real transformation in your body and ability.
Do I have to go barefoot?
Many of us do, but you do not have to workout barefoot. Some are put off by it, others have accrued foot mileage that doesn’t allow it. For those folks, bring dedicated indoor shoes. Many have stepped out of shoes and discovered their feet can help do and feel things they’ve never felt before!
The modern body’s feet are weak and asleep. This weakness and numbness leads to many issues further up the kinetic chain. Do your feet, ankles, knees, or hips hurt frequently? Are you prone to plantar fasciitis, turned ankles, knee pain, other lower body injuries? Is your standing balance miserable? Wake your feet up and strengthen them. The best way to do it is simple: give them an opportunity to do their thing au naturel in a safe, controlled place.
There’s a growing trend and body of research pointing to minimalist shoes or barefoot and many of us support this return to essentials. But don’t run out the door until you learn how to do it properly, and build the strength your feet need to do it safely. We can also teach you how to avoid injuring your feet by trying to jump right into the natural thing! If you are specifically interested in learning to run minimalist, contact us. If you are interested in working out minimalist, join us.
Our members are here for many reasons: hate the gym thing, were working out a lot but not improving, like the philosophy and methodology, like the people, just want someone to tell me what to do, want to learn to do cool things, don’t like wasting time and energy, have big goals to accomplish and want guidance, want to train more effectively, some are passionate about movement and want to work out with like-minded tribe.
Most folks are 30-50. We’re about 55% women and 45% men. Some are very active and athletic outside our workouts, some only moderately so, some not so much. Many only workout with us. Most live lives that demand a ton of energy and inspiration, and have little time to while away on dull, fruitless exercise errands. Enter Gymnasium!
We also pride ourselves on delivering scalability and universality. In any given session you will see a wide array of abilities and people, each getting the workout their body needs for where they are in life, or just that day. So you best be okay with helping people progress, no matter their starting point, and be okay with people wanting the same for you! Our youngest members are in their early twenties, our oldest are late sixties. Some are in private sessions, small group, others in group, or a mix–all are getting the best workout and movement practice of their life.
Are you good cross training for running, biking, or swimming?
Yes. What we do is uniquely well-suited to build not just the strength and stamina to help you run, bike, swim, faster, longer and better, but we’ll also help you practice the mobility, efficiency and resilience so that your demanding sport doesn’t pound bad mileage into your body. We’ll make you feel and move better, stronger, longer in your endurance sport. Many of our members have had PRs, or finished races, erased injuries, and accomplished goals they never would have thought possible with sport specialized training alone.
The Complete Movement Diet is the ultimate in cross training because that’s it’s design: train the fundamental, underlying patterns of all movement and strength. Endurance athletes practice extreme specialization and frequently pay for it in injury and mileage. We’ll help you build your capacity for miles, without accruing more mileage.
Are you good cross training for …?
Yes. We’ve had members tell us that they feel more alive, present, and able in their running, dance, power lifting, martial arts, basketballing, skiing, softballing, running, childbirthing, shoveling, every-daying.
The Complete Movement Diet is the ultimate in cross training because that’s it’s design: train the fundamental, underlying patterns of all movement and strength. Most athletes practice specialization and pay for it in injury and mileage. We practice completeness and are rewarded with ability across movement contexts. We will make you stronger, more powerful, have have more stamina for athletics and life.
Are you a kettlebell studio?
We use kettlebells (the tool) for a variety of things and teach Kettlebell Lifting (the discipline), but they are just tools and components of our training. We also use bodyweight, other weights, medicine balls, jump boxes, ropes, suspension straps, rings, bars, sandbags, mats, blocks, swinging clubs, dodge balls, kick pads, tires, and more. Outside we use fences, stairs, boulders, benches, trees, fields, hills, curbs, rocks, logs, and whatever is put in front of us.
That said, we are the place to really understand what kettlebell is all about. A visiting internationally competitive lifter recently found us by recommendation after calling the other kettlebell spaces in Greater Boston he could find. He was ready to give up on connecting with a place that could speak actual Kettlebell Lifting. We were truly surprised!
But then, many people have come through our doors with varying degrees of “kettlebell” experience. What most have had was some form of resistance training that happened to include holding a handled-ball in their hand. Hot tip: if your kettlebell wasn’t measured in kilograms, if your “swing” works the front of your shoulders more than your hammies and butt, if your kettlebell instructor can’t tell you her international ranking, if your kettlebell experience was in a group fitness class at some big box, you probably haven’t actually done any actual kettlebell lifting. If you are looking for someone with a kettlebell, they are easy to find. Kettlebell Lifting? Well, just because you have a yoga mat doesn’t mean that you are doing Yoga!
We use kettlebells for Kettlebell Lifting– medium weight lifts that train fundamental whole-body strength, power, and stamina. And we use them as a naturally shaped tool (a small stone with a convenient) for loading functional strength patterns and natural movements. See here:
I won’t get bulky, right?
All of our workouts will make your body naturally strong and able, and that means naturally lean and mean. You body will refine it’s natural shape, which might mean less fat and more muscle mass on men and less fat and lean, toned muscles on women.
And unless you take drastic measures to alter your body’s chemistry and orient your life and training around it, you won’t get bulky from lifting weights. We are also not a bodybuilding studio which is what people do if they want to get big and are awesome at it. We love bodybuilders, some of us used to do bodybuilding. Sometimes we even use classic bodybuilding lifts to supplement our workouts. But we build lean, natural strength–the foundation of all movement. We lift with skill and technique, not brawn and groans.
And and another thing. We strongly believe that modern feminism should step in and confront the pervasively negative tactics of women’s health and fitness marketing. If you lift kids, pets, briefcases, suitcases, snow, dirt, stones, grocery bags, kayaks, canoes, beach gear, camping gear, logs, and furniture, why would you only ever pick up 3lbs dumbbells when you workout? Why do you have that deep-set fear of getting “bulky” from natural movement of lifting a weight of the ground? Here’s an idea…
In summary, Gymnasium = naturally, lean, toned muscles for men and women. More importantly, Gymnasium = awe-inspiring, universal athletic ability and a bulletproof body for humans!
Do you do cardio?
There is growing awareness outside of athletic circles that “cardio” can be trained without an elliptical machine and a screen, or a spin instructor (whaa!?), but a lot of people still haven’t experienced it. All of our workouts have cardio; we’ll have you breathing harder than a rat on wheel! We prefer to call it by the physical ability (not your body’s reaction to it): Stamina/Endurance.
And done right, real movement can deliver far more results per breath than any machine could ever. A recent ACE study looked at a particular kettlebell swing workout and found that the only thing that could approximate its intensity was “cross country skiing, uphill“! And try rope jumping, or running with a sand bag, or whole-body intervals. Oh yeah, we got your cardio, mister/sister!
When is your ab toning and bun lifting class?
Are you looking for the best toning and sculpting class ever? Here you go. We are it, hands down (on the ground and give us 50 yoga burpees). Ever stop to think why people use words like “tone” and “scuplt” and “lift”?
How can I change my (insert undesirable body part here) as fast as possible?
Spot reducing is a persistent myth because it’s useful for selling future landfill and DVDs. Movement will change your whole body and mind. Heck it’ll change your chemistry, right down to DNA expression. If you ask this question in person, we’ll politely reassure you that your trouble spots will be melted away, but know you’re reinforcing the sigh and eye-roll reflex this question has created among many thinking movement coaches and trainers.
What’s the best exercise for my core?
Your abs, your core, your center, your axis, your dantien, your 3rd chakra, your whatever-you-call it is truly at the center of nearly every movement we perform. If you do what we do, roll how we roll, your core will be engaged as it’s meant: as the epicenter of movement. And you’ll never do another crunch. One of our mantras is “move from your center”.
In addition, some of the crawling, folding, bridging, planking, tucking, and rolling we do has elements of what’s typically called ab/core work. If we have to show you our bellies to prove that not “doing abs” is an effective means of 6-pack training, we will (then you have to show us yours so we can see how effective your method is). If you can’t help but need to feel the ab burn after imprinting the cover stories on every issue of Men’s Health and Shape into your retinal memory–godspeed, good deluded addict. But please, please get some real movement done first!
(This gist of this answer also applies to the “What’s the best for” any other body part, too. It takes time to erase the knee-jerk reaction we all have try to delineate every exercise into and answer to “What is this working?”)
Are you like Yoga?
Movement done right brings more awareness to and connection between your body and mind, and we do a lot of bodyweight movements that echo modern yogic approaches. Our warm ups and cool downs draw heavily from the breath and static stretching postures of yoga and Chinese yoga (called chi gung).
Some yogis would call any practice done with the right mind, Yoga. That’s how we see it, too. This is our Yoga. Many of our members and trainers have some or much yoga in their life. And if you are looking for a yoga class for active recovery or a weekly re-centering, we can definitely point you to some great ones.
Are you like CrossFit?
We lift weights and medballs and our bodies, we use intensity, value universal physical ability, and do things that will get you kicked the heck out of most gyms. But we don’t see fitness as a competitive sport or believe that all movements or workouts should be practiced at one level of maximum intensity. Many athletic trainers and coaches have doubts about the long-term viability of the CrossFit training model and exercise selection. We say if you like what you do, whatever it is, just learn do it smart and listen to your body.
We are fans of many coaches who used to or still do associate with CrossFit. Most of our trainers have done CrossFit (and even attended the weekend certifications). Many of our members are former CrossFit members, or mix the two. But ultimately, for our own (sometimes shared) reasons, we all sought a different answer. And found it!
What diet do you recommend?
One that promotes changes in the short and health in the long term. If you are looking for a means to change food choices and eating habits to lose weight or get healthier (and not just suffer through a diet), we can help you and have a program based on sound principles for that, one that can be incorporated alongside any diet or lifestyle you maintain or wish to.
We are omnivores, pescatarians, flexitarians, vegetarians, vegans, localvores, cavemen, Mediterraneans, anti-inflammatory and many of us even find a way to eat without identifying with a particular label (yes, it’s possible!). We recommend learning better food and habit principles and then learning to build them into a daily routine that fits your life and body. We can put you on a program to do this!