By Amy Lee, Guest Writer
I gotta say, being the exercise snob I am (I’ve Soul Cycled in the Hamptons), I was a bit wary of stepping into the proverbial ring at 9Round in North Branford. Its generic strip center home flanked by McDonalds and Dairy Queen notwithstanding, I was expecting a gimmicky variation on the Curves theme — exercise by exposure. Boy was I wrong! 9Round the 30 minute kickboxing gym kicked my relatively fit (not to be confused with shapely) butt! Here’s how it works: There are 9 stations set up around the gym which you rotate through for 3 minutes (you can do anything for 3 minutes) each. My trainer, aka Megan “The Machine” Beavis quickly and efficiently told each person exactly what to do, the bell rings and we were off. The exercises are specific to every “boxer” and change every day. It’s truly remarkable. Not only was I able to take out my frustrations by hand and by foot on several different-shaped bags (heavy, speed and eliptical), I was able to drop in on my own schedule and burn somewhere between 300-500 calories almost as fast as I could say Muhammed Ali. All the trainers are certified and the owners, husband and wife Shaun Berner and Tina Valaouras are both professional Kickboxers.
Classes: Kickboxing all day, every day
Schedule: Very flexible. Opens at 6:30 3 days a week and until 8 Mon-Thursday.
Atmosphere: New, clean equipment, efficient use of space. Everything you’d expect in a boxing gym but the ropes.
Price: $49 a month for unlimited classes
Extras: When you enroll you get your very own pair of gloves and hand wraps. Cherry on top: you can choose your own boxer name. Also access to a proprietary nutrition guide