Banana Skirt Productions Brings the Club to the Gym

by Bridget Conrad | 3/7/2018 6:03 PM

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I think it’s safe to say that most of us enjoy getting on the dance floor at a club. In fact, I was just telling my friend a couple of days ago that I miss the extra cardio that comes with going out all the time. Ironically, as I expressed my longing for a good dance session, I came across a group of dance workout classes offered by Banana Skirt Productions that actually bring the club to the gym. Even though I don’t live in New York or Washington, D. C. where these classes are offered, I wanted to let you all know a little more about this lively dance community.

Banana Skirt Productions was created by Akina Rahmaan, a former marketing executive for Def Jam, and a mom who had a desire to get back into shape. She used her love for music to create a group of fitness classes that make people feel like they are out with their friends, as opposed to doing cardio. Those who take classes at Banana Skirt describe them as a combination of a fitness workout class and a dance class. Even if you’ve never taken a dance class before, all are encouraged to join in and have fun because every class that Banana Skirt offers is a judgement-free zone.

One of the most popular classes at Banana Skirt is called Ratchet (Zoomba) Fitness. In 2014, this class began as a way to get friends together to learn music video choreography, but now it’s evolved into a high-intensity cardio class. Ratchet Fitness is a watch-and-follow class that infuses hip-hop and choreography into a workout experience where participants can burn up to 600 calories in an hour. The goal of Ratchet Fitness is to bring the club to the gym and make everyone feel like they are attending a happy hour without alcohol. Aside from all the fun you’ll have, the class also increases stamina and endurance while focusing on muscles in your abs, gluts, arms, and legs.

Banana Skirt also offers classes formed around popular pop icons. StarPop Dance Fitness is a class devoted to your inner pop star where students learn choreography from stars like Beyonce and Britney Spears. As an added value, the final performance from every class is taped and posted to the Banana Skirt website so participants can continue to practice the moves they learned.

On the same note, Snatched HIIT Dance Fusion is a dance circuit class that combines dance cardio and HIIT inspired circuit using weights, resistance bands, and gliders set to a hip-hip playlist. This class teaches participants how to achieve the body of their favorite pop idol.

In addition to classes, Banana Skirt instructors hold special dance workshops and are available for private parties and sessions. Sounds to me like this is the perfect place for a girls’ night or bachelorette party.

With 11,000 followers on Instagram, Banana Skirt Productions credits a lot of its success to social media. “I would say 80% of the people who come to our classes saw us on Instagram,” Rahmaan told PIX11. Check them out on Instagram @banana_skirt for class videos, information on the Banana Skirt clothing line, and announcements. And if any of you make it to a class, please hit me up on Instagram @bridgec17 and let me know about your experience. In the meantime, I’m going to make my house more club-like and turn on a video from to add some extra cardio into my everyday routine.

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