View Full Version : What is Curves?

07-27-2003, 05:12 PM
I've read a few posts about it and then just noticed one here in Kansas City--is it a workout place? or a diet program? Thanks!!


Mom to
Kathleen 3/22/01
Ellen 6/4/03

07-27-2003, 07:43 PM
It's both, but mostly a workout place.


You can do just the workout without doing the diet program if you want. It's a 30 minute workout, three times a week. It works by hydraulics, so you are working both opposing muscles at once, so you get twice the workout in the same timeframe. I love it, I've been going since October 2001, and lost 70 pounds before I got pregnant. I kept going all through my pregnancy, and I am sure that is why my delivery was so easy.

Jacob Nathaniel Feb 91
Logan Elizabeth Mar 03

07-30-2003, 11:16 AM
As the other poster indicated it's both diet and exercise.

I tried it (only b/c they were in the same strip mall as my daycare, otherwise it would have not appealed to me even slightly). I did not do the diet (the low carb type diet, and they sell you their own products, energy drinks, etc if you're into that)

If you are accustomed to working out in a gym, this isnt for you. The workout is done in 30 second increments (i think it was 30 seconds). The equipment is placed in a circle, you work the piece of equipment for 30 seconds, then go to a recovery station (walking in place) for 30 seconds, then on to the next machine. They encourage you to make 3 full circles, but of course you could do more if you wished. They have an automated voice telling you when its time to move on and everybody shifts.

The idea was intriguing...work the equipment as hard as you can for 30 seconds and then you walk in place. You cover all major muscle groups..arms, legs, back, stomach, etc.

There were many things i didnt like about it, even though i lost some pounds and inches before my second pregnancy. There are no men allowed, there are no mirrors (I actually like to see if Im using the appropriate form), the equipment isnt adjustable (every other gym i belonged to stressed the importance of adjusting the equipment to align with your joints correctly). In the end, it felt like a place for women afraid of men and afraid to look at themselves. I know Im not slim, but I am not ashamed nor afraid. I would prefer to do a workout that allows me to use proper form, and I like having men around.

Also, i hate to think about other sweaty people using the same equipment (you dont have time to wipe things off...all you get is 30 seconds). It seemed geared to people who werent real serious about working out...I think this could be great for a certain demographic, and the retired women I saw really enjoyed getting their body moving, but I hated it.

You'll likely see more of these popping up...it was rated one of the fastest growing franchise businesses this year and you dont need much room to set one up (mine didnt even have a shower).

07-30-2003, 01:02 PM
wow. I'm not afraid of men or afraid to look at myself. I think Curves is a great place. The machines are hydraulic, so they don't need to be adjusted. The faster you move them, the more resistance there is, so everyone from beginners to advanced can use the same machine without having to move weights in between. They are designed in such a way that you can position your body properly no matter if you are short or tall.

All in all, I think it is a very ingenious system that produces great results when done correctly.

Jacob Nathaniel Feb 91
Logan Elizabeth Mar 03

07-30-2003, 08:28 PM
It't too bad it didn't work out for you. Ours doesn't have mirrors, but it does have "mirrored" windows (windows that have been treated to act like mirrors). And the other location near me does have windows all around, so maybe that was just your location?

Ours have a wide demographic. We have lots of 20 and 30 somethings as well as grandmotherly types. It's actually a lot of fun. It's good for me because I think regular gyms are a rip off. And it's easy for me to find 30 minutes. I've lost several inches and 0 lbs :-(. But I know that is diet related. I go there expecting to lose inches, but you will have to eat right and maintain an active lifestyle in order to lose weight.

I do try to not think about cooties on the equipment ;-) But otherwise, it's really nice.

07-31-2003, 11:59 AM
You can find a review that i basically agree with on epinions (and describes it as a very 'over 40' crowd), but there are several reviews on epinions so read both pro and con.


The curves website tends to push franchising as much as the exercise plan, which bothers me as well.

in short, this is place for beginners. The "Well and Healthy Woman" website reviewed several exercise programs and described the curves plan as "best for beginners and other exercise strangers".

As for adjusting the hydraulic equipment, it wasnt the weight that i was speaking of, but the proper height and pivot points (i thought i had stated that??)...I have always been taught that equipment should be adjusted to suit my proportions and the equipment should pivot in line with my joints (knees, elbows, whatever). However, i agree it's hard to hurt yourself on the equipment b/c you have to push it so hard and quick to get much resistance out of it. (a sports medicine professional could comment more on this, and i have talked to a few but am not well enough versed to describe why they had a fairly low opinion of this equipment, but i dont know what the professional support would be for being designed 'in such a way' that is appropriate to anyone)

So, if it gets you going then that's all that really matters. Hopefully it will motivate you to get out and try other things when it gets boring.

And if you're losing inches but not pounds, dont dispair! that only means you are turning your fat to muscle, and that's a great thing! (Edited to add, i am aware that fat doesnt actually TURN into muscle, was just using a common encouraging phrase. In fact, perhaps the poster isnt even gaining any muscle, and is just changing proportions as hormones change or what have you. I would actually need a full physical evaluation to know anything for certain. The point was to be encouraging to someone who is not seeing the scale move. Lighten up folks!!)

07-31-2003, 02:52 PM
If you are having to push it hard and quick to get much resistance out of it, you may be at a franchise who does not know they have to do regular maintenance on the machines. The location I go to changed owners, and it made a big difference in the feel of the machines and the results people were getting once they started doing the maintenance properly.

Fat doesn't turn to muscle, they are two different types of tissue. But muscle is more dense than fat, so as you lose fat and gain muscle, it is possible to remain at the same weight, or even go up. That didn't happen to me, I lost 70 pounds and a lot of inches in 8 months at Curves.

I guess it's like anything else, you only get out of it what you put into it, and things tend to live up to our expectations.

Jacob Nathaniel Feb 91
Logan Elizabeth Mar 03