Star Power

Budokon

    Photo: Illustration by John Cuneo

Unroll your mat and cinch your belt: Yoga and karate had a love child

Origin: Budokon was developed by L.A.-based martial-arts expert Cameron Shayne as a new-millennium cocktail of Okinawa karate, Gracie jujitsu, and Olympic-style taekwondo stirred with Ashtanga yoga.
Who's Doing It: David Arquette and wife Courtney Cox-Arquette, Jennifer Aniston, beach-volleyball star Casey Jennings
The Workout: Expect your Budokon sensei to be more Richard Simmons than Mr. Miyagi. "Let's get some Lionel Richie up in here," shouts instructor Maura Barclay during a session in L.A. "Time to get your stretch on!" The practice begins with ten minutes of silent meditation, which gives way to 30 minutes of Ashtanga-influenced yoga. Afterwards, you transition into a 30-minute martial-arts workout. The class is a demanding aerobic routine. And while the yoga is standard fare, the martial-arts rush makes this class addictive if you lean toward adrenaline sports. You will crouch and jump, punch and kick, and let loose pent-up aggression even if you think you have none. Ignore feelings of inadequacy, which are inevitable if your instructor, like Barclay, is sweet, bubbly, cute, and capable of kicking your ass. "It's not about how high you kick or how quickly you move," she says. "It's about precision and integrity in movement."
They Say: Budokon increases upper-body and core strength, as well as overall flexibility. And because the action requires constant focus, the class takes more effort and burns more calories than most mentally passive (read: treadmill) workouts.
I Say: The kicks and strikes are much harder than they look—and Budokon is fun, if a bit contrived. The pace is swift, akin to an hour of full-court basketball. Plus you'll seriously increase your odds in a bar fight.
Where to Find It: budokon.com; $10–$15 per class

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