If you want to reboot your workout routine or discover a new one, boutique fitness classes offer the structure, schedule and community many of us crave. Even better, they also promise to torch calories fast with research-backed workouts.
But how many calories could you actually burn in a single session? In truth, the answer to that question varies based on many factors (Think: Your age, gender, body composition and fitness level, to name a few). Still, we asked instructors to provide their rough estimate of just how many you could scorch per workout.
If you’re considering signing up for your first session, here’s your handy guide to calorie burn by boutique fitness class, according to exercise science and personal training pros.
In a single 45–50-minute Pure Barre™ classses, you can burn up to 500 calories, though you’ll likely burn the most in the Pure Empower class, which focuses on elevating your heart rate through dynamic ranges of motion and high-intensity interval training (HIIT) barre sequences. As your heart rate rises to more than 130 bpm and peaks at upwards of 170 bpm, your body torches calories to keep going.
In each Pure Barre class, you’ll tone and strengthen your muscles in every target group (arms, back, core, seat and thighs) with high-repetition, low-impact exercises and small, precise movements inspired by ballet, Pilates and yoga. These exercises are anything but smooth and easy, though — you’ll learn to “embrace the shake” as you’re forced to test your willpower by holding tough positions.
If you’re up for the challenge, you can find Pure Barre studios in nearly every U.S. state. To give it a try, sign up for a class online. Drop-in classes range from $25–35.
In one Orangetheory Fitness™ (OTF) class, men can expect to burn 600–800 calories, while women clock in around 400–600 calories, says Irene McCormick, MS, a certified strength and conditioning specialist and the company’s senior director of fitness. “The workout is designed to help you earn your “afterburn,” which is scientifically known as excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC),” she says. Put simply, your EPOC is the amount of oxygen it takes to get your body back to baseline after a tough workout, which results in calorie burn even after the class is over.
If you crave variety, OTF has you covered: Instructors craft a different one-hour workout for every day of the year, with custom treadmills (though you can bike or stride on an elliptical, too), WaterRowers and strength-training (with TRX straps, benches, free weights, resistance bands, BOSU trainers and AB Dollys), says McCormick. These workouts collect plenty of data for personalized coaching, too: Before class, you’ll strap on a heart rate monitor and be able to see your calorie burn and heart rate zone in real time on TV screens around the room. You’ll also collect Splat points (which signify a fat cell exploding) as you up your intensity and surge into orange and red heart-rate zones.
Yep, in just one 50–60 minute sweat sesh, you could burn up to 1,000 calories as your metabolic rate rises by up to 15% with a focus on increasing your lean body mass, says Lindsey Sinicki, manager and instructor at Barry’s Bootcamp™ in Atlanta, Georgia.
But it’s called “bootcamp” for a reason: Like other hybrid classes, Barry’s Bootcamp calls for a speedy mix of cardio and weights. “Barry’s signature method utilizes the most effective combination of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) by incorporating 25–30 minutes of interval-based cardiovascular routines on treadmills with 25–30 minutes of strength-training using free weights, resistance bands and more,” explains Sinicki. If ambience is important to you, this class might help you get into the zone. You’ll sweat it out in a dimly-lit workout space with red light, the thrum of workout jams and motivating instructors pushing you to reach your physical and mental limits.
Ready to enlist? There are Barry’s Bootcamp studios open in nine U.S. states with more coming soon, and you can snag a spot for a class online. Classes range from $25–$36 per session, and you can purchase a class pack, too.
The Shred415™ experience divides one hour into four 15-minute intervals alternating between treadmill drills and strength training for a calorie burn of up to 1,200 calories, says Tracy Roemer, co-founder of Shred415.
“By combining dynamic running technique drills with high-intensity intervals, our program safely and effectively increases your neuromuscular efficiency and aerobic capacity,” says Roemer. On the floor, you’ll use free weights, medicine balls, BOSU balls and exercise bands. The best part? “We don’t believe in one-size-fits-all fitness,” says Roemer. This means instructors make sure to share personalized modifications throughout the workout. If you’ve got kids, you’re covered, too — Shred415 offers childcare and a kids’ lounge.
You can give Shred415 a try for free. Studios have popped up in 12 U.S. states, and more are on the way.