Great Winter Workouts for Moms (and Almost-Moms)

Get moving with these nine awesome Philly classes — with or without the kids Read more

Philadelphia Exercise Classes for Moms

When the weather is this brutal, it’s actually not that hard to dig-up the motivation to get your sweat on: Working out cures winter blahs, warms you up, combats all that chilli-eating you’ve been doing, and is an indoor activity. Thankfully, in Philly, there are a ton of awesome classes worth seeking out. Here are nine Wee-recommended places for about-to-be and new moms to fit in some cardio, blow off some steam, sculpt a specific zone and rebalance, whether you’ve got baby in tow, or not.

For Toning-up Everywhere …
Try: Pure Barre. This 55-minute workout is quick-moving, head-to-toe strengthening and seriously slimming. Expect to work hard, but move quickly between a variety of exercises that mix cardio and strength training, mostly using the barre. While the class isn’t directly targeted for new moms, it’s a bounce-back favorite (read about our experience) because of how efficient the workout is. There are studios in Rittenhouse, Haddonfield and Wayne. The online sign-up system is easy. Bring socks and water.

For Calorie-Torching Fun …
Try: Ploome. This No Libs fitness studio is a bit of a hybrid; you’ll find pilates, yoga, and a ton of cardio classes. What you won’t find is anything tired or boring. The teachers are energetic and upbeat, the moves are challenging, and the music is always great. All classes here are perfect for new moms, but Naughty Bits, a class dedicated to tightening-up and strengthening the pelvic area and lower abs pre- or post-baby is highly recommended. We also love the Going Gaga cardio barre class for dancing to awesome music and the Champagne Sunday brunch workouts (try the Double Trouble, where you’ll play with jump ropes) which ends with a much-deserved glass of bubbly.

For Strengthening and Lengthening (With or Without Baby) … 
Try: Philly Power Yoga and Thrive Pilates. We love this Rittenhouse-area studio for it’s millions of options. There are a variety of prenatal and postnatal yoga and Pilates classes (which focus on building up and maintaining good muscle-tone and flexibility, plus stress management and relaxation techniques), as well as Mommy & Me classes and workshops, so you can bring your little one along.

For Targeting Specific Areas …
Try: Lithe Method. Lithers are cult-like for a reason: These workouts combine cardio, cheerleading and butt-kicking sculpting moves in a way that no other workout class does. (Some of our favorite classes are Skinny Jeans, for working on those butts and thighs, and Waspie, which focuses on your waist.) But here’s our favorite part: Owner Lauren Boggi is a Center City mama herself, and knows how hard it is to fit in a sweat session, so she has arranged babysitting services in her studio on certain weekday morning and afternoon classes in both the Rittenhouse and Old City locations. Call the studios for more details on pricing, schedule and rules. (And if you are looking for more gyms with babysitting services, we’ve got a whole bunch of those, too.)

For Pre-Natal Strengthening …
Try: Holly Waters Fitness Aqua Aerobics. Personal trainer Holly Waters has been swimming since she was a kid, and teaches these group fitness classes that use the natural currents of the water to safely and effectively tone up. While the class isn’t preggers specific, working out in the water soothes and strengthens muscles with less pressure, an important thing for soon-to-be-moms. Bonus: Holly spends lots of time working on hip flexers (which come in handy, you know, for the big day). She offers a few night classes at week at Fitness Works in South Philly. (See her Fox 29 segment here.)

For Being Sweaty and Social …
Try: Fit4Mom Philadelphia. All of the workouts offered by the local chapter of this national program incorporate your child, so you don’t need to stress about sitters. Something pretty awesome happens when you get a group of new moms and new babies together — instant comfort and bonding. In the colder months there’s Stroller Barre (where you’ll tone on your tippy toes while pushing the baby in the stroller) and the all-over-working Fit4Mom class indoors near Rittenhouse; in the warmer months, there are the walking and pushing outdoor Stroller Strides classes, which are super fun.

For Centering and Toning (Before, With, or After the Kids) …
Try: Mama’s Wellness Joint. There are a lot of awesome yoga classes for before and after baby around the city, but at this Wash West studio, you’ll find it all in one place. There are yoga classes you can do with your infants, babies, toddlers, kids and the whole family (and one where kids can wear their PJs); options and workshops for pre- and post- natal work that focus on centering and balance; and a new baby-bump boot camp which incorporates strength training with resistance bands and body weight that’s safe for expecting moms.

For Shaking It Off …
Try: Philly Dance Fitness. There aren’t any specific mom-targeted programs here per say, but if you are feeling completely exhausted, cooped-up, out-of-touch, flabby (a.k.a mom-like), PDF can be as good for your mental state as it is for your rump and abs. The classes are pure enjoyment — you’ll bop along to great music with a bunch of other people who could care less about the brand of your yoga pants or your dance skills. There’s Zumba, Tap, Bollywood Dance, House Party, and a ton of other things to get you moving, like two-hour mega dance parties. Bonus points for being reasonably priced. Locations in South Philly, G-Ho, and Midtown Village.

For Small Group Strengthening …
Try: Relentless Fitness. Relentless likes to keep things targeted with small-group classes that are fast moving. There’s the Ladies’ Hour which focuses on your butt and abs, there’s a H.I.T.T. workout, and Deck of Cards, where each playing card represents a different move — you’ll run through all 52. Relentless also has great gymnastic and tumbling classes for your kids and — we LOVE this — a few options where you can workout while your child has his/her tumbling lesson.