Chiara De Luca, an actress and film producer who lived in Paris, got hooked on a favorite workout activity of the French — l’aquabiking. It seems aqua cycling is all the rage in France and in Italy, which doesn’t seem farfetched considering the culture of cycling in Europe. So she came to Miami and opened ElementAqua, a studio in Little River devoted exclusively to aquatic fitness with a focus on aquacycling.
The appeal of water exercise is it builds endurance as a cardio experience, but as the water supports the body weight, it reduces stress on joints.This was my first time with aqua cycling though I have done water aerobics. I’ve also done spinning and found this far superior. It’s easy on the lower back, and the upper body, arms and core also get a workout. Another serious benefit, she says it burns 700 calories an hour.
The center is in an industrial and minimalist space, happily with its own parking. The action happens in an in ground swimming pool equipped with 20 stainless steel aquabikes made in Italy. The pool is kept at 83-85 F year round. There are changing rooms with private lockers with digilocks, and private showers as well as complimentary towels and aquashoes on loan.
Five different classes include the basic cycle for 45 minutes, a power cycle that’s more intensive, and aquacircuit for 60 minutes for full body conditioning that mixes cardio and strength training. Finally, there’s aquazen, a mind body class and pre and post natal classes that are a gentler routine.
The day we went the class was full. It was an interesting, international crowd, with ages ranging from the 30’s to 60’s.
She’s offering introductory rates now, $25 for a trial class and a monthly unlimited pass for $99. Usually, prices are $39 a class which drops to $29 when a series of twenty is purchased.