When your workout has you bouncing off the walls

Crazy Fit Arcade-Style
Crazy Fit Arcade-Style

It looks like an enormous Twister board — but it runs up the walls and has flashing lights.

It definitely makes you twist and turn and jump and run and crawl and sweat. And that's the point.

The AG6 studio workout at Manhattan's Asphalt Green is like no other in America. In today's competitive fitness arena, its uniqueness makes it stand out even brighter than its own neon lights.

"This was an investment," said Maggy Siegel, executive director of Asphalt Green, a nonprofit sports complex with a $28 million operating budget but which still needs to compete with the area's vast array of fitness studios.

Asphalt Green paid, "several hundred thousand dollars for the studio," according to Siegel. "This was a great addition to our offerings, to offer the kind of class that no one else had, and it's brought a lot of interest to new people."

The technology comes from a Spanish company, Pavigym, which has been making flooring for decades. It recently launched the interactive floors and walls, which it calls the Prama concept studios. Pavigym has outfitted over 30 of these, mostly in Europe, and expects to expand further in the U.S.

Participants in the AG6 class at Asphalt Green in Manhattan are following the lights with fast feet.

"There has already been considerable interest throughout the U.S. from our nationwide health club flooring partners and customers," said said Pavigym marketing director Sean Greene. "We will use the synergies with this network to accelerate that expansion in the U.S. starting on the East Coast and Chicago and moving on to the West Coast."

The expectation was that the workout would appeal mostly to millennials, but Greene said they were surprised to find that the most successful classes are those run for kids, seniors and sports teams.

"It's ridiculous. I have never sweat so much, worked out so hard and felt so tired when I was done," said Andre Kaleen, 51, who has done the AG6 class several times. His daughter, Jennifer Coccia, was one of the fitness instructors who went to Spain for Asphalt Green to check out the product.

"We've fielded a ton of calls, a lot of people who are really interested in the technology," said Coccia. "Now it's up to them to head over to Spain, check it out themselves or even come here and make the investment."

The class instructors need to not only know the moves, but understand the technology. Several panels operate the lights on the walls and floors, but Coccia said: "If you can use an iPhone, you can do this."

The workout itself is designed to tone not only the body but the brain. The six in AG6 is for the sixth sense. Participants have to watch the lights and make their moves according to patterns on the floor, all of which exercise the brain.

"It's fun, it keeps you engaged," said Julio Sandoval, 40, and another repeat customer at AG6. "I think it's more focused."