New Fitness Classes Hopes To Keep Students Exercising
By Albert Shelby
February 20, 2012
Director of Recreational Services Wonda Berry had a vision that started with a fitness class named Zumba. Zumba is a dance fitness workout that involves dancing to international music. That vision then expanded and three more fitness classes were created to help get students at Western and the community more engaged in exercising.
“SGA brought it up to us that they would like to have some self-served classes that people could get in shape in,” Berry said. “So we brought up Zumba.”
After doing a survey with participants in the Zumba workouts, Berry decided to add more classes to help bring in more men, and also more students, to participate in the exercising programs. SGA sponsors all of the programs, and they also helped Berry get the three new classes started.
The Toning program was started to help lower the body fat of the participants. The exercises are physical, and their main goal is to help develop a better physique.
Toning classes are held every Tuesday in the West Arena from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. The classes are instructed by Lynae Sanders, who feels that one of the main goals of the class is to help her students tone up their muscles one at a time.
Sanders feels that the classes motivate her to stay in shape and to stay active.
“Obviously its good for your health, and it makes you feel and look better,” she said.
Poppy Sullivan is the Instructor of the Turbo Kick and PiYo classes. Turbo kick is a mix of kickboxing and dance moves that are choreographed to high-tempo music. The exercise is a cardiovascular challenge that helps with strength and endurance.
Turbo Kick classes are held on Mondays and Wednesdays from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Fitness Center. On Tuesdays, the class is held from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the West Arena.
PiYo classes are held on Thursdays from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., also in the West arena. PiYo is a mix between Pilates and yoga that focuses on strength and conditioning. The choreography is designed to make participants sweat and helps to tighten abdominal muscles.
Poppy Sullivan feels that the new workouts are something that some students may be inexperienced in. Bringing the program to St. Joseph allows more people to experience the program and hopefully get something out of it.
“It’s something different,” Sullivan said. “I know there’s not a lot of turbo kick classes available in town. The PiYo class is something new to St. Joe, and I feel that it is definitely something different for students.”
Zumba classes will be held every Monday from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. and every Thursday from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the West Arena. Danyelle Jackson will be the instructor for Mondays and Mark Gomez will be instructing classes on Thursdays.
The classes average from 6-24 students a class and with the addition of the three programs, Berry hopes to get as much students as possible to come out and participate.
“Once it gets started and gets going, it will keep adding more people,” Berry said. “We’re trying to get the classes going and get more people to attend.”
A self-defense program will be held Feb. 27 from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in the gym. The program is created to teach students on campus the basic techniques of self-defense.
All of the programs are free for all students and no previous experience is required to participate.