By Diana Condolo
Have you heard of Kangaroo fitness? I first heard about it last year and assumed it was a new exercise method, but it actually has been around in Europe since 1994. Kangoo Club Toronto in Liberty Village features Kangoo Jumps at their Kangoo Power and Kangoo Conditioning classes. You need to wear specialty Kangaroo boots that have heels equipped with large plastic ovals in order to take Kangoo Jumps classes. The boots allow the wearer to jump and bounce throughout low-impact workouts without overworking her joints.
Putting the Kangaroo shoes on is easy, but getting up from the chair can be unsettling the first time you try it. I wondered if armoring up with a helmet, knee pads and wrist protectors would be necessary (partly kidding), but the instructor convinced me that I would not need anything as I would not fall. Honestly, my first few steps were unsteady and I felt the need to hold on to someone as we walked over to the exercise room but, after a few tentative hops, I developed confidence and started to get into the bounce of it all.
Dorina Rigo, who has a dynamic and fun personality, doesn’t waste any time in getting the Kangoo class started and your heart pumping. She leads with such confidence that even the newbies will follow along at whatever pace works best for themselves. I started off slowly, feeling anxious about toppling over, but I did start to feel comfortable with the moves. I was very comfortable with jogging. The most difficult pose for me was to stand still.
About the Kangoo Jump exercise:
- The weight of the shoes makes your legs work harder – you build muscles.
- The Kangaroo shoes are said to reduce impact by 80%.
- It is great for strengthening your ankles, shins, knees, hips, and back in a gentler manner.
- Balancing on the shoes works on your stability, which in turn works the core muscles.
- It increases balance and coordination – I really felt this.
- It improves cardiovascular health and lessens chance of heart disease.
- It increases metabolism, improves lung capacity and does all those good things vigorous exercise does.
What to bring: exercise clothes, water, socks that are higher than the boots and the desire to hop wildly.
The rush of endorphins is pronounced and you leave feeling energized and buoyant!
Now my friend, who is going to Australia this year (so jealous!), can complete a kangaroo marathon.
What did the mama kangaroo say to her baby?
Stop being such a pouch potato.
Single drop in class at Kangoo Club Toronto is $15 + $5 boot rental
5 class pass: $60 + $15 boot rental
10 class pass: $85 + $25 boot rental
Kangoo Club Toronto is located at 171 East Liberty Street, Suite 118, Toronto.