Review: Aqua Studio

These are spin shoes. For spin class in a pool. Weirdly they are very comfy.
If Soulcycle and pool had a baby, Aqua Studio would be it. I’ve been eyeing Aqua Studio for some time and was super excited once they were on the Classpass (because $40 for a 45 minute class is a bit steep for me- even with the $34 1st timers class). 
The Studio
A short walk from the Canal St. A/C or Franklin St. 1 stops, the studio is a classy joint that gives off a homey feel.  You won’t find bright graphics or designs anywhere (think Revolve or Soulcycle).  There’s exposed brick and a ton of light upstairs in addition to ample sitting room.  
Once you walk though the door, you check in and rent shoes for $2 and grab a towel. Walk though another glass door and down the stairs to the locker room. It’s a whole different vibe once walking downstairs. Everything is a dark grey.  
There are lockers with keys so no need to bring a lock, showers, and mirrors to sit and do makeup/hair. Also there are 5 showers in the locker room so you can get in and out relatively quickly. 
Source: Aqua Studio
The Class
Classes are men or women only and seems to cap out at 15 or so.  I took Friday’s 8:30am Interval class with Anne. They also offer women’s restorative class and women’s power class.  It seems that the men only have one type of class to choose from (aka THE men’s class ha).
Once you get into the pool area, there are open showers to rinse off before getting in the water.  There weren’t any hooks to hang my locker key and towel so I hung it on a pipe on the back wall.  I got into the pool and set up my bike as usual (seat at hip height, handlebars arms length away, etc.).   The bike is literally a regular spin bike with shoe cages. The pool wasn’t deep at all.  I’m 5’1″ and the water came up to chest height. 
Remember how I said this felt like SoulCycle in the water? Well, there were candles in the front of the room. Class kicked off with easy riding with our eyes closed which did remind me of SC – that whole zen feel. Then of course we got into the intervals.  The most difficult of the spin positions was 2nd position (standing straight up cycling). It felt like I was walking through mud.  Anne said to move our legs faster so we wouldn’t feel stuck when our foot hit the bottom. 
There’s no resistance on the bike and no weights. However, there is a killer arm and ab series in the 2nd half of class.  It includes keeping your feet in the cages but getting off your saddle and getting behind it, in the water (think of this as the 4th spin position).  Trying to balance yourself was difficult and it forced me to use lot of core to do so even while holding the saddle so you weren’t sinking under the water.

In front of the class – in and out of the pool are two instructor bikes for the instructor to demo moves for us.  It makes so much sense since it’s so hard to demo IN the water.  

Overall, I loved the class even though it just felt awkward the first time (I hate not knowing what I’m doing). I would recommend wearing a real swimsuit and not a bikini (issues doing so many standing/sitting intervals).  It’s a great low-impact cardio workout with great music. Although I still woke up the next day fatigued and a bit sore. 
Con: I have tendonitis in my foot. These spin “shoes” don’t provide much support for my foot and the cages hit right where my tendonitis is. So my left foot was a bit sore the next day. I was planning on going this week but definitely don’t want to risk a tendonitis flare up before the Brooklyn Half so I’m going to class next week. 
Check out Aqua Studio and book a class. They’re on Classpass if you have a membership! 

5 thoughts on “Review: Aqua Studio

  1. I think I know a thing or two when it comes to bikes and trikes. After all I have had the opportunity to review quite a few of them. I've also owned a few before I was even reviewing them as well. I'm a bit of a daredevil and when it comes to any outdoor toy I'm all over it. When given the opportunity to review the new 4-in-1 Touch Steering Spirit by smarTrike, I was excited. This was different from what I normally review. I have done mostly balance bikes and while my balance is getting there, I will be there by this summer I can assure you, I still didn't know how to pedal. Sure balancing is great and I can cruise for a bit but regular bikes have pedals and I needed to learn how to use them.

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