Before starting the new CBD workout at Hanson Fitness, owner Harry Hanson— known for training celebrities like Rihanna and Tyra Banks— helped me apply a transdermal patch to the back of my neck. He guaranteed the patch contained “good quality CBD oil” and that it would help with muscle relaxation. He then turned me over to Fodell Oukil, who works as a trainer for the U.S. Men’s National Soccer Team for the 17u division. After the class, I’d “sleep like an angel,” Fodell assured me.
Zen music filled the dimly lit room as I moved from deep stretches to core work and lower body exercises. Each movement was separated by deep breathing to promote relaxation and there were periodic breaks to sip CBD-infused “sparkling hemp water.” (Honestly, the blackberry and lemon-flavored drink tasted a little too much like soda to enjoy during a workout.)
Yes, the creators of the viral nude workout class are once again taking workout trends to new heights—now with CBD. The Manhattan personal training studio has launched an intensive CBD workout class that includes a cannabidiol patch, infused water and, soon, CBD aromatherapy.
Hanson created the program with overall wellness in mind. “I love this whole CBD thing because I do believe it helps the body relax,” he said. “It expedites your recovery and reduces anxiety.”
My complimentary class started with a series of standing stretches, which Fodell said “works your heart circulation to get the CBD oil to engage,” and then moved into a series of lunges and seated core-focused movements. It felt like athletic stretching mixed with low-intensity barre. The idea, Fodell explained, was to “get your heart rate up again to keep your circulation going and the CBD working.”
Every few minutes, Fodell would let me know that it was time to drink more of the water. The patch gave a warm sensation on my neck and shoulders throughout the class, which helped me remain calm and helped my muscles remain loose. The movements weren’t difficult, but I began to work up a sweat and the patch started to peel off. I fidgeted with it to get it to stay on for the rest of the class.
CBD workouts have started appearing throughout the city, although many of them are yoga-based. SannaOhana’s pop-up CBD yoga classes, held in Tribeca at the experiential CBD store Come Back Daily, promote the supplement and often include cannabis and hemp education. While these classes combine low-intensity yoga with CBD add-ons, Hanson’s class tends to focus more on a mixture of stretching, light strength training and bursts of higher intensity work.
CBD has been the subject of conflicting views this year. Studies have been inconclusive about topical CBD products, and a ban on food and drinks containing CBD oil in restaurants was instituted in NYC in February, with a grace period for businesses to stop using the cannabinoid by October. Recent reports say that many restaurants and cafes are still selling these products despite the ban, claiming the health benefits of CBD oil. Gyms and other businesses that don’t focus on food are a gray area in the debate on ingestible CBD.
Hanson said that because CBD can be so controversial, they research the products they use. “We received recommendations from doctors. We wanted to make sure there was a good level of CBD oil and zero traces of THC in these products.”
The Good Patch’s “Be Calm” patch is one of the lower-dosed CBD patches on the market. It contains 15 mg of hemp cannabidiol and 3mg of menthol, used as a topical analgesic (painkiller). This is what causes the warm sensation when the patch is applied. The patch can be worn for up to 24 hours and is water resistant. (I showered with the patch on following the class and it didn’t fall off.)
Cloud Water contains carbonated water, honey, lemon juice concentrate “natural flavors” and 25 mg of pure hemp extract. It’s marketed as a drink that will “provide a sense of relaxation” in a 40-calorie, 12oz bottle. According to a Cloud Water analysis, quantities of THC in the product were less than 0.0001mg and were undetectable by tests. The company states that its CBD isolate “is the purest form of CBD.”
My hour-long CBD excursion left me feeling limber and relaxed, although that may have been more a result of the thorough form corrections and stretching help I got from Fodell. The trainer alone seems worth the price of the class (expected to be around $50), as Hanson Fitness’ normal sessions are around $100 per hour. Think of it as a half-priced training session with some extra CBD bonuses that will help you knock out after you work out.
Hanson Fitness Union Square is located at 795 Broadway Floor 2. The CBD-concentrated classes will be held Friday evening.