I love trying new fitness concepts, so when I heard about BOARD30, a HIIT workout using resistance bands, I immediately wanted to see what it was all about. The brand claims that its unique blend of cardio, strength training, calisthenics, and stretching will produce results quicker than other workout systems. So, naturally, I wanted to put it to the test.
I attended classes at a BOARD30 studio over the course of two weeks, for a total of nine workouts. Because a change in body composition isn't always reflected by the scale, I didn't want to use my weight as a barometer for results. Instead, I had the manager take my measurements at the beginning and end of my two-week trial.
While I was sore pretty much every day of the two weeks I worked out with BOARD30, I still wasn't expecting much change in such a short period of time, especially because I didn't adjust anything about my diet to increase my chances of seeing results. I was shocked when I lost two inches, including an entire half-inch from my hips. If my results sound enticing, here's what you should know about this up-and-coming fitness brand.
What Is BOARD30?
The BOARD30 workout centres around a long body board with resistance bands attached to both corners at the front and back of the board, and bands that run the board's length on both sides. There are also long, flat bands attached to the walls of the studio. The studio near me in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, also features sky bands, which are resistance bands coming down from the ceiling, and mini trampolines for an added cardio element.
Founder Floery Mahoney previously owned a Pilates studio and developed the BOARD30 system by first tying resistance bands to her furniture. After only 30 minutes a day for two weeks, the results she saw inspired her to create and launch the BOARD30 brand.
The concept combines resistance band training, low-impact interval training, Pilates groundwork, and wall resistance band training for a full-body HIRT (high-intensity resistance training) workout. The national fitness chain currently has six locations in five states, with more planned to open in 2021.
What Is a BOARD30 Workout Like?
While it may vary by studio and trainer, the workouts I attended included one-minute work intervals followed by 20 seconds of rest. That was a big adjustment for me, as I'm used to HIIT workouts where the work interval is typically shorter. The longer intervals coupled with resistance bands made movements I wouldn't usually struggle with suddenly much more difficult.
I immediately noticed my muscles fatiguing faster than I expected them to. For example, the classes often started with a warmup comprised of marching up and down the board, holding the side bands while swinging your arms. I could not believe how much my shoulders started to burn just during that warmup!
The rest of the workout varied greatly per class. The design of the resistance bands on the board and walls creates countless exercise options. We did bicep and tricep work with handles attached to bands at the top of the board, butt and inner-thigh work with ankle straps attached to bands at the back of the board, back and shoulder work using the sky bands hanging from the ceiling, and all kinds of cardio using the bands attached to the wall.
What Makes BOARD30 Different From Other Workouts?
Training with bands adds resistance to more range of motion exercises. It also requires slower, more controlled movement because there is resistance at every point, in contrast to weight training, when gravity usually works in your favour for half the movement.
The slower pace made me more aware of how I move my body, making it obvious when I fell out of form to compensate for weaker muscles. For example, I noticed that I tend to sink into my hip while doing donkey kicks and fire hydrants instead of keeping my body steady. Recognising that alerted me to engage my abs more to get back to proper form.
I thoroughly enjoyed feeling out of breath from the interval cardio and sore in all the right places (hips, lower butt, shoulders, abs) from the resistance training. But my favourite part of the workout was that it taught me a new type of strength. It showed me that being strong is more than the ability to lift heavy things. The BOARD30 workouts challenged my body in ways I'm not used to, proving strength is also the concentration and power needed to move in a fluid, controlled manner. It was like mindfulness meets movement.
How You Can Do BOARD30 Workouts at Home
If there isn't a BOARD30 studio near you or you prefer to work out at home, don't worry. The company has developed an at-home option consisting of app-based workouts on the BOARD30MINI ($250). The flat, wooden platform is only 10 pounds and takes up just two feet of space, making it easy to store and use pretty much anywhere.
The BOARD30MINI comes with four resistance tubes, a set of handles, ankle straps, and two flat resistance bands. The subscription-based app ($20 per month) will include a variety of classes, including Pilates, cardio, strength training, and more. New classes will be added each month and feature celebrity trainers like Darci Bawdon. The company also has plans for additional BOARD30 at-home accessories, like a bar attachment and door-anchored overhead system.
Since my two-week trial, I've kept this workout as part of my overall fitness routine. It brings an added component of toning, strengthening, coordination, and stretching that feels refreshing. I recommend it for anyone looking to challenge their mind and body in new, functional ways.