We Tried It: Kickboxing at LionHeart

Photo by Eric Shih

VALLEY is always on the lookout for new trends and products to incorporate into our daily health and wellness routines, and recently we came across an awesome workout class at LionHeart Fitness that we’re dying to tell you about.

Everyday in one of the back studio spaces at LionHeart gym located at 127 Sowers Street, Bruce Lombard—owner of Lombard MMA—guides groups of young women through high-intensity kickboxing classes. The only equipment you need is pair of boxing gloves, but if you don’t own a pair and still want to participate, Bruce has two huge bins of gloves for you to borrow.

VALLEY recommends hydrating and eating well throughout the day that you plan on coming to class, as it’s an hour of constant aerobic circuits and you could easily become dehydrated if you don’t prepare beforehand. The variety of the workout plans is what makes these kickboxing classes so great. Each class is different in terms of the drills and the sequence in which they’re done, which makes the classes feel new and fresh each time. As one woman taking the class said, “You never know which drill is coming next and I like that because not knowing the full workout plan keeps me in the moment instead of looking ahead to what I’ll have to do afterward, which can sometimes be mentally defeating.”

There is, however, a general flow of each class: an aerobic warmup with think cross-jabs and alternating knee lifts, the tough stuff including burpees, sprawls, ascending kicks/punches with squat jumps, crunches or pushups, and finally finishing up with a few minutes of abs. Every exercise is usually done with a partner and is broken up into 30 second or 1-2 minute intervals. There are short breaks interspersed between each workout, so you do get a chance to catch your breath and grab some water.

This atmosphere is not intimidating whatsoever and very welcoming to newcomers. Bruce is helpful with explaining and teaching how to properly perform a move to maximize your workout, and the women who have been longtime followers of Lombard’s classes are equally encouraging. The first class you take is a free trial. If after your trial you decide to fully commit, the cost is a flat monthly rate of $115, which allows you access to unlimited kickboxing classes, full use of LionHeart’s gym equipment, tanning beds and sauna. If you are involved in Greek life, there is a discount offered, with the above facilities and classes at a reduced price of $75 per month. Notify the LionHeart employee that you’re affiliated with a sorority when you sign up for the membership in order to receive the discount.

Overall this is an intense workout that pushes your physical limits, but despite its grueling nature, the classes are consistently full, and one woman admits that, “I would never normally push myself this hard if I were to work out on my own. Having Bruce there to tell me to ‘get lower on that push-up’ or ‘get one more [burpee] in’ helps me move past my exercise comfort zone and excuses.” If you’re searching for a new workout to mix up your old routine, VALLEY suggests you give kickboxing a try.


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