Tone up and send your heart rate soaring — with a little help from these exclusive GIFs. (Photo: The Estée Edit/Yahoo Health)
“The Body” title may rest solely with Elle Macpherson, but she’s got some serious competition in the form of Simone de la Rue.
Simone’s the creator of Body By Simone (BBS), a white-hot dance-cardio class that leaves celebrity clients (she counts Anne Hathaway and Naomi Watts as fans) and laypeople alike dripping in sweat. She’s also penned a book with the same name, and runs BBS TV, an online subscription service that gives viewers access to dozens of at-home workouts.
The celebrity trainer got her start at age 3, when she began dance lessons in her home country of Australia. She honed her skills in childhood classes and, later, as a Broadway performer. Now, she’s dedicated to sharing her fitness ethos with the world — starting with these three high-intenstiy workout GIFs, exclusive to Yahoo Health and The Estée Edit.
“These moves can be done on their own or you can do all three of them together,” Simone tells Yahoo Health. “I always try to add an element of cardio into each workout, whether that is jumping rope, jumping jacks, highs knees, or one of our dance routines.”
That’s not the only element setting BBS apart from other trendy workouts. In the increasingly serious world of boutique fitness classes, Simone keeps it drama-free — and fun. “We ask our clients to leave their ego at the door and come in and dance like no one is watching. The routines are short and can be done by anyone, not only dancers. We make it a joyous experience.”
While BBS is dance-based, it’s similar in many ways to a physical therapy or strength-training class. That’s by design: dance is notoriously hard on knees and ankles, and Simone has seen first-hand how the repetitive movements can wreak havoc on dancers’ bodies. “We teach students how to jump correctly, by going through the feet toe to heel, and stretch before and after the workouts,” Simone explains. She credits a strict pre- and post-workout routine with keeping her injury-free through her professional dancing years — the same definitely can’t be said for the other dancers. “We also encourage correct footwear,” Simone adds (The BBS choice: Newton running shoes).
When it comes to her own busy life, Simone fits fitness in where she can. “I work out alongside my clients and teach regular classes in the studio,” she says. “That is enough.” She’s also a fan of the paleo diet, eschewing grains, dairy, and excessive sugar for lean meat and produce. “I eat a lot of protein and fresh leafy vegetables. I also believe in moderation, so I allow myself a glass of wine and some chocolate.”
Below, find three of Simone’s go-to moves.
Move #1: Side Lunge
Simone says: Hold onto 5-pound weights. Step out directly to the side with your right foot as you bend your left knee over your toes. Lower your arms to the floor, keeping them straight. Step back into your starting position as you raise your arms up in an overhead press. Repeat 20 times on each side. This works your quads, glutes, and thighs, plus your shoulders and chest — perfect for shorts and tank-top season.
Move #2: Side Plank With Kickback Arabesque
Simone says: Lie on your side and push up to side plank on your forearm. Hold the side plank for 20 seconds. Lower down to your side and stay stacked up on your hips. Bring your knee into chest as you engage your lower abs, kick your leg straight back behind you working your hamstring and glutes. Repeat 30 times on each side. This blasts your obliques, shoulders, core, butt, and hamstrings.
Move #3: Jump
Simone says: Stand straight, bend your knees as you engage your quads and glutes, and jump up and turn in the air to face the other side. Land with knees bent over ankles and repeat. Try to complete 3 sets of 10. This is a cardio move, working your full body (just be sure to land gently on your feet!).
These GIFs are a part of the “Ready, Set, Summer” series on The Estée Edit.