New Da Vinci BodyBoard classes at the Vail Vitality Center are full-body workouts.
Floery Mahoney is an avid entrepreneur, and after starting the first Pilates studio in Vermont, then opening a high-end restaurant, working as a furniture maker, and finally becoming a chocolate maker, she decided to develop a workout routine that was quick and effective to complement her busy life as a mom and a business owner.
“I turned 45 and was making chocolate, and having been a runner, my body started to not be the way it usually had been in the past, which was fit and healthy,” shares Mahoney.
She upped her game at the gym, started going to boot camps and didn’t take days off of working out. But the fat still stuck.
“I did some research and realized I have been beating my body up, which was putting it into stress mode, and I was hanging onto fat and aching all the time,” she says.
So she stopped working out two hours a day, and tied bands to furniture in her house. After playing around some, she found a “sweet spot” of a shape, which was a really good sized rectangle.
“I realized I could do an amazing amount of work on it,” she shares. “I went down to working out just 20 minutes a day, and within two weeks I had lost 8 pounds, and my whole body felt like it was so refreshed and happy instead of broken down.”
She made a prototype (using her furniture-making skills) of what is not the Da Vinci BodyBoard. Now, she has a studio in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and the Da Vinci BodyBoard has been picked up by spas and fitness studios all over the world.
In December 2016, the Vail Vitality Center added Da Vinci BodyBoard classes to their schedule, and have 6 boards to work with for the 30-minute sessions. The classes combine Pilates moves with TRX-style body resistance training and cardio.
“It’s a full-body workout that can be done in 30 minutes,” explains Lisa DeKoster, spa manager for the Vail Vitality Center. “The movements that can be done on the board are endless, ranging from an interval cardio bias to stretching and toning.”
She says the resistance bands allow for more varied movements, and also engage the smaller muscle groups that are often ignored in more traditional workouts.
“This promotes lean muscles and joint protection, with no weak spots,” adds DeKoster. “Classes can be fast paced and engaging, or slow and specific.”
The cardio component is created with rapid movements paired with resistance — like mountain climbers with bands tied to your ankles.
“You’re flying and you’re literally in a puddle of sweat afterwards,” shares Mahoney.
DeKoster says the workout can help promote injury prevention by lengthening and strengthening sports-specific muscles. The movements can also be used to rehabilitate in the injury recovery process.
“It is so versatile,” she explains, “I really can’t think of anyone that couldn’t benefit from working out in this program.”
Kim Fuller is a freelance writer and yoga instructor based in the Vail Valley.