RE:UNION, THE FUNCTIONAL FITNESS CONCEPT FROM THE CO-CREATOR OF F45, EXPANDS FOR THE FIRST TIME

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MARIAM GABAJI

FEB 28, 2020

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IMAGE VIA RE:UNION

High-intensity interval training, or HIIT, is the get-fit-quick fad that has taken the world by storm, and F45 Training, Australia’s fastest-growing fitness franchise, seems to be at the forefront of this upsurge. They’ve expanded at rapid speed and now have a whopping 1,700-plus studios around the globe.

But despite the resounding success of their bootcamp workouts, F45 co-founder Luke Istomin just isn’t convinced that “working your body too hard, too often, and too quickly” is the answer to your fitness goals. As his newest fitness concept, RE:UNION Training, is just beginning to take off in Sydney, he’s trying to make being smart about functional and strength training down (and even slowing it down) the new norm.

OUT WITH THE OLD, IN WITH THE NEW

After leaving F45, Istomin didn’t want to look back, eventually launching RE:UNION in October 2018 at Potts Point.

“Like any marriage, some work out while others don’t. I just thought it best to get away from a bad marriage [F45] and go back to a happier place as the name RE:UNION aptly suggests. It’s all about good vibes,” Istomin explains.

While RE:UNION shares some similarities to his first fitness venture, the community at Potts Point thinks differently. While training models such as F45, Barry’s Bootcamp, and Orangetheory Fitness focus on high-intensity interval training to burn maximum calories in a minimum amount of time, Istomin doesn’t believe in their longevity.

According to him, unless you’re 18 to 25 years old, doing a HIIT workout four or five times a week isn’t sustainable. Even if performed correctly, the frequency can cause central nervous system fatigue. And unless you’re a trained athlete, the recovery time is much, much longer.

RE:DEFINING TRAINING STANDARDS

RE:UNION isn’t your common garden-variety functional fitness space. Instead, it’s all about training the human body with purpose, and “redefining what it really means to be fit” by targeting strength training.

They hold 50-minute classes, held in small groups of three, focused on building core strength, body conditioning, mobility, and recovery. You’ll be ideally matched with members who have similar physical abilities and fitness goals to combat clients from feeling completely out of their depth and intimidated by a big class.

Why? To reduce the rate of injuries found in other gyms that look to overload you. To Istomin and team, being stronger means performing better.

“We definitely want to appeal to people who are yet 30 or above. What we offer is structured progression to help make you stronger. We train what’s called ‘sub-maximally’ — you’re going to get pushed really hard but we’re not out to break and crash you.”

COMING TO A NEIGHBOURHOOD NEAR YOU

Although Istomin hopes to change the way you approach fitness, he doesn’t want to undermine anyone’s work. He has a healthy respect for the formulaic fitness franchises of the world. With RE:UNION, though, it’s all about getting it right from the start. “We don’t want to compromise on anything.”

Filled with this positivity, determination and performance programming, the concept is expanding outside Potts Point for the first time in 2020. Their second studio, which will be opening its doors very soon, is in Brookvale (Northern Beaches), while the third one will take over Kent Street in the CBD.

Stoked to give it a go? All you keen beans can take up their seven-day free trial offer before officially committing. Just how different from F45 is it? Let your body be the judge.

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