Fitness Fads You've Never Heard of. ...but These Brand New Classes Will Help You to Get in Shape

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Byline: SAM MURPHY

IF you're bored with your swanky new gym, you need some inspiration to keep your fitness routine fresh. The latest classes are not for the fainthearted: you can stretch yourself with Gyrotonics or risk a black eye with martial art Muay Thai. Here are some of the most radical in the capital...

Zen Do

It's a surprise to find a martial hatched only last year. Zen Do ("the correct path") was invented by Rafael Nieto, director of the new Karmaa Martial Arts Centre at Camden Lock. It's a blend of karate, oriental kicking, boxing and self-defence. Aficionados include Jonny Lee Miller, Jude Law and Sadie Frost. "It uses aerobic and anaerobic energy systems and improves speed, flexibility and co-ordination," says instructor Denise Bailey. "You will learn punches and kicks in a non-contact class."

Where? Exclusively at the Karmaa Martial Arts Centre (020 7485 7474), membership only, but introductory classes available. Also Pilates, yoga, ta'i chi and massage.

Gyrotonics

The Gyrotonic "expansion system" houses hooks, ropes and pulleys to allow a full range of movement: to stretch and strengthen muscles and connective tissues and to mobilise joints. Julia Carling credits Gyrotonics with getting her pre-baby body back. It was invented by Juliu Horvath, a Romanian ballet dancer, inspired by yoga, ballet, gymnastics, swimming and t'ai chi. Pupils work on a onetoone basis.

Where? For your nearest studio, visit www.gyro tonic.com. Beatriz Pascual offers one-to-one classes at Natureworks, 16 Balderton Street W1 (0207 355 4036).

Bollywood/Bhangra

Indian dance is set to be one of the hottest new fitness trends of the year.

One of the main movers is Honey Kalaria, trainer to many Bollywood stars and director of Honey's Dance Academy in Ilford, Essex.

"When I opened in 1997, I had 22 students, now I have 800," she says. " Bollywood is great for toning up and aerobic fitness - it includes classical handand-head movements," (the latter, says Honey, will zap double chins).

Bhangra is more energetic, with lots of squatting to firm up legs and bottom. …