I’ve wanted to check out FitWall for a few months now. I read about it, watched videos on it, talked to some health & fitness enthusiasts and finally got to see it in person. The founder of FitWall Canada, Bonnie Goldmacher welcomed me to her facility with a friendly smile. She gave me the run down on what FitWall really is and why she is so passionate about bringing it to Canada. She introduced me to my instructor and certified trainer Patrick, who proved to me he really earned their tag line, “You are the machine!”
Since FitWall is fairly new to Canada, let me explain a little before I share my experience. The best way I found to describe it to anyone is to say: “If you can imagine your own personal mini climbing metal wall, now add TRX, plyometrics, resistance bands, pull-up bars, and more. That’s FitWall!” From what I’ve read, the inventor and founder of FitWall is Doug Brendle. I don’t know Doug in person, but after trying out his invention I need to find him and give him a high five. FitWall has combined so many different ways of exercising into one machine. Plus, they recommend 30 minute workouts. No typos here. I did write 30 minutes. By using vertical training, you are automatically engaging a variety of muscles. Not all machines or exercises can claim this. It can be challenging–and sometimes needs to be modified–for those starting out or people with injuries. The idea is to build on your strength, endurance and flexibility bit by bit.
Now, onto my experience. FitWall studio has an open space concept with a FitWall area for adults and kids classes. I can see my nephews having a blast in this class. They’d probably think this is part of their Spiderman training. But even he would have to stop to catch his breath with this workout Patrick prepared for me. The studio seems very minimalist because you only need the FitWall. No bouncing back and forth looking around for this machine and that machine at the gym. Forget those days. They have approximately 9,000 different exercises they can do using the FitWall. The other bonus is you’ll always have a certified trainer running the class. The trainers are there to show the right technique, motivate, check your form and if you need a bigger challenge, to show you how to do it safely.
Patrick turned the music up, got his mic set ready and started the workout. It was a 30-minute session that targeted all the muscles. He informed me that his expectations were for me to stay on the wall for as long as possible. I could only touch the ground when I really needed to or if we were going to use the bands. He first showed me the moves, and then challenged me to do as many reps as I could squeeze in for 30 seconds. I thought to myself, “I’ve got this!” With every set, I read the tag line that was conveniently stuck at eye level: “You are the machine!” It could have been pride or encouragement from the tag line, but I knew I had to push through. I’m not shy or embarrassed to say that I groaned to finish many reps. The workout was challenging and I immediately understood what they meant when they said that many of my muscles would be engaged. I was shaking by the end of it. If anyone wants to try it, and I recommend you do, Bonnie mentioned she’ll welcome anyone interested to try it out for free for their first time. Give her a call, drop by and get ready to hang tight.
Written by Millie (Castaneda) Soriano
Millie Soriano (formerly Millie Castaneda) is a teacher by day and a health & fitness writer by night. As a writer, she visits locations and events, blogs at her site, and writes articles about healthy lifestyles in and around the city here at Spotlight Toronto. Her passion for maintaining balance in her life drives her curiosity to try all things new. This includes new gyms, bootcamps, 5K, 10K and half-marathon races, CN Tower climbs, you name it!