ST instructor launches fitness class at Otto’s

Tim Haft leads a MoshFit class at Otto’s Shrunken Head’s concert space. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

Tim Haft leads a MoshFit class at Otto’s Shrunken Head’s concert space. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Personal trainer Tim Haft has come up with a solution for New Yorkers who are already dreading the drudgery of the gym memberships from their New Year’s resolutions with a new class called MoshFit.

Haft is no stranger to unconventional fitness classes (or the use of puns for creative class names) as the founder of Punk Rope, which is held at the 14th Street Y every Monday. But MoshFit takes the casual nature of Punk Rope, which he describes as a “throwback to recess,” and puts it in the back room of Otto’s Shrunken Head, one of the last tiki bars in the East Village and in a space that is normally used for concerts.

And in case you forgot you were exercising in a bar, Haft said that MoshFitters can reward themselves afterwards at happy hour, with $4 draft beers.

“You don’t usually see a fitness class in a bar,” Haft admitted, “but I know the space and I know the crowd. It’s very rock and roll but it’s also the East Village so I thought that could work.”

Aside from the location, the class itself will also have a “rock and roll” feel, since the music playing will be less like the top-40 tracks normally found at a gym and more punk rock, ska, metal and other related genres. The workout itself will combine creative and traditional calisthenics, as well as partner and group conditioning drills designed to improve stamina, agility, balance and strength.

Haft isn’t worried about having enough room for all the people who want to participate, because he noted that about 50 people were able to fit into the back room for a previous event. But if it does become a tight squeeze, he wouldn’t mind that so much.

“If it becomes a huge hit, then that’s a nice problem to have,” he said.

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