This Virtual Workout Will Fulfill Both Your Fitness and Travel Goals in 2021
Get your fitness on, virtually, at Machu Picchu and beyond.
Throughout 2020, odds are you became a little bit more of a couch potato than usual (please say this didn’t just happen to me). The spread of COVID-19 meant forgoing things like vacations and visits to favorite workout classes, all in the name of the greater good. But, after the arrival of the Oculus Quest on my doorstep, I realized I didn’t need to forgo adventure entirely. At least not in the virtual world.
“For those of us who got a thrill out of rock climbing at national parks, hiking the hills of Machu Picchu, and/or meditating on the beach, not being able to travel to due to the threat of COVID-19 on a global scale has impacted our thrill-seeking and fitness/wellness routines,” Supernatural explains on its website. “But what if you could work out in the most breathtaking destinations from around the world and beyond!?”
What if, indeed.
As a non-gamer, the first time I strapped on the Oculus felt a bit awkward. However, once I locked in my workout space, calibrated the headset, and entered the Supernatural fitness experience, I legitimately almost cried. That’s because it took me to a sweeping vista of Machu Picchu, which happens to be the last international destination I visited before lockdown began.
Here, I was greeted by a cheerful instructor, who encouraged me to look around and take in the view. The rather realistic-looking landscape was almost startling. It felt like I could step off the ledge and go on a hike.
“We work with photographers all over the world that are capturing the most stunning destinations in full 360 3D,” the Supernatural team shared in an email statement. “From Islands in the Galapagos to the ruins of Machu Picchu, all the way to the tops of Volcanoes in Ethiopia, we focus on bringing destinations to our members that unlock feelings of joy, awe, and Wonder.”
After looking around, it was time for the workout itself. The patient instructors walk you through the first few moves, which include hitting balls out of the air with light saber-like bats in each hand and ducking through triangles coming at you at differing heights and speeds. It felt akin to doing the battle ropes and going through a bootcamp class at the same time.
“The workout movements themselves are ‘mapped’ by a team of choreographers who all have different movement backgrounds, from swing to ballet to hip-hop and everything in between,” Supernatural says. The choreographers, the team added, work with fitness professionals (consulted by physical therapists, experts in kinesthesiology, and the company’s Head of Fitness, Leanne Pednate) to create workouts that “tap into the flow of every song and strengthen muscles in every part of your body.”
It’s also a fitness routine that never gets old as a new workout is released every day and in a range of intensities so users can always find something for them.
Oh, and one more thing we can’t forget is the music. Oh, the music. Ranging from classic rock to disco, top 100 hits, ‘90s classics, and more, Supernatural has it all. The only requirement of their playlists is that they keep you going.
It’s a fitness experience (not a “game” as I mistakenly called it to the Supernatural team) that I wanted to never end. So, I kept playing until I could barely move the next day, but did it again anyway because it was so much fun. It helped me escape, even for just a few minutes, to my favorite places, igniting both a wanderlust and my abs, both of which are still burning with a fiery passion.
Stacey Leasca is a journalist, photographer, and media professor. Send tips and follow her on Instagram now.