Right before I left town for the holidays, I got an email from a new studio called Pon de Flo. They invited me to their grand opening party and to try a class at their soon-to-be open Mott and Broome location. I couldn’t make the celebration but I did take them up on their offer of a free class.
What is Pon de Flo? in their own words, “Pon De FLO is a Caribbean reggae dance based fitness program structured around high intensity interval training. There will be burpees, jumps, squats and so much more! It will be intense – BUT it will be FUN!”
The people at Pon de Flo were kind enough to invite me to bring a friend to the free class. My coworker and pal Jenna agreed to join and after work one evening two Upper West Side ladies headed downtown to Mott Street.
The studio itself is funky but welcoming. It reminded me of a hostel in Thailand. Lots of tiki-action happening and lots of places to sit, as well as well-posted WiFi password. I can get down with all of that.
I must not have read the class description closely, because it was a surprise to me that this class was of their “Glo” variety. Glo? That’s “Pon de Flo” for blacklight. Upon walking in Jenna and I were each given a wearable glow stick. Many of the class participants had tribal blacklight face paint on. It looked like we were going to an hour-long Coachella session.
The class itself was a lot of fun. Sans verbal cues, we were led through a ton of fun dance sequences. (You know, Zumba style.) In addition to some hip-hop-y dance moves, were lots of jumping and even some planks. The workout was more intense than a typical dance class, but I’m not an expert on dance classes, so that’s just my novice take.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the music was incredible. There were some songs that I recognized (there was definitely a Bieber number in there) but largely the tunes were upbeat Caribbean reggae that was new to me. It was music to jump around to, and that we did.
The class was high-energy. People yelled and cheered as we jumped around, fogging up the mirrored walls.
For a studio that’s only been open since January 1, the class sure had a lot of regulars. So many people in the class obviously were not doing the routines for the first time. I asked the owner after, and she explained that Pon de Flo used to be in Crunch gyms, and a few other chains and the regulars from those classes have transferred here.
Everyone seemed to be smiling throughout the class, me included.
Some notes: The studio has lockers, but you need to bring your own lock. There is a cafe in the front of the studio where you can get a drink or snack.
Thanks for having us, Pon de Flo!
My friend and I attended the class for free, but all opinions are my own.