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'ETC' boot camp coming to Equinox South Beach

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Traditional group fitness classes are run casually and attendance can be hit or miss. The problem with this system is that the results can be hit or miss as well, so Equinox Fitness is changing the rules.

Equinox South Beach will soon become among the latest in the luxury fitness club chain to offer "Equinox Training Camp," which is also known as ETC for short. This new type of group class is designed to offer a military type boot camp experience but with perks usually found only in expensive personal training programs.

"I'm very excited about this. ETC is unique for a number of reasons," said Equinox Group Fitness Manager Abbie Appel, who recently taught a demonstration class with her colleague, Angel Alicea.

ETC is a six-week program that combines coordination, resistance training, cardio drills and metabolic interval training, which are similar to the types of activities offered in other group classes. But there are several differences between ETC and a traditional group fitness class, Appel noted.

First, attendance is mandatory. Participants must commit to attend three times a week for the duration of the six-week program. This enables the exercises to be progressive, and also results in the maximum body transformation. In addition, the participants get to know each other and become friends, "which helps them stay motivated," Appel added.

Also, instead of a single instructor, two trainers are on hand at all classes. One trainer instructs the class, while the other moves around the floor checking to make sure the exercises are being done correctly. "This way, participants get more attention, and they also get help in modifying exercises to their particular needs," she said.

According to Appel, another difference is that ETC will provide nutritional information to help participants change their lifestyle. "There will be four lectures within the six weeks of training, with topics including nutrition, healthy lifestyle choices and staying on track."

Members will also receive a fitness assessment at the beginning and end of the six-week session.

The class will be offered to Equinox members at no additional charge, but enrollment is limited.

ETC will begin at Equinox South Beach soon. Classes are already underway at the Equinox clubs in Coral Gables and Aventura.

More info: Equinox South Beach