A British gym has become the first to introduce a high impact calorie busting fitness craze which has swept through parts of America - sneezing classes. And the 30 minute workouts have already proved a huge hit with gym members keen to improve their fitness by simply sneezing.
Instructors from Fitness First have been flown to America to learn the finer points of the technique known as "Sneezetics." Each of them spent a week working with Dr April Jones the woman behind the fitness programme.
The self-styled fitness guru runs her "Institute of Sneezetics" from her home in Tofool, Arizona. During their week long stay the three instructors learned the finer points of making people sneeze and the benefits it can bring.
Fitness First personal trainer Darren Taylor, who is based at the Fitness First gym in Southampton, Hants, said: "Making someone sneeze was difficult at first.
"But Dr Jones was brilliant at making people sneeze and my colleagues and I soon got the hang of it.
"The best thing to use is a feather duster and if you flick it under a member’s nose in a certain way they are almost guaranteed to sneeze.
"I've also pioneered my own pepper sprinkling technique. With a flick of my wrist I can now send enough powder into the air to make almost anyone sneeze."
Darren added that the classes have been a huge hit at his gym where "Sneezetics" classes are being piloted by Fitness First, especially when a member has a slightly larger nasal passage.
He said: "They have been very popular. People who are looking for a quick workout love it. Following a warm up we are making them sneeze around six times over a 30 minute period and there is no doubt they are feeling better for it."
Dr Jones said: "You would have to be a fool not to see how this is a beneficial thing. Sneezing is a convulsive expulsion of air from the lungs and because of that the benefits are huge.
"Sneezing over a 30 minute period can help weight loss, muscle toning and increase of lung function.
"The art of sneezing is as old as time itself and there is clear evidence that cavemen used it as a way of keeping fit and healthy.
"It really works core strength and most people will lose around 50 calories per sneeze, depending on enthusiasm.
"I have seen Americans who have developed a six-pack and lost pounds simply through energetic sneezing workouts."
Wonder where I found this? On the Fitness First website – I might have to investigate this further, because it's just ludicrous. I wonder what that 'doctor' would have to say if I asked a few questions about these sneezing six-pack people. Crazy stuff eh?