Image Courtesy of Catholic University Fitness and Recreation
By Chanel Cole
Whether you have specific fitness goals, want to burn off some Chick-fil-A calories, or just want to live a healthy lifestyle, group fitness classes on campus provide for a unique and interactive workout experience.
If you’re hesitant about joining a group fitness class, perhaps learning about some of the benefits will be more encouraging. A regular attendee of these classes, freshman biology major Miriam Stinson shared her experience: “My favorite part about going to the classes every week is that they hold you accountable…Everyone’s positive and high energy makes it something to look forward to each week.”
There are six different classes that are offered this year: HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) Squad, Learn to Lift, Power Hour, Morning and Evening Yoga, and Women on Weights. Every class is taught by trained instructors that are passionate about helping the CUA community reach their fitness goals.
HIIT Squad is taught by ACE-certified instructor and second-year student at CUA Law School Kelly Burns, who teaches classes both at CUA and OneLife Fitness. The class meets on Mondays from 5:30-6:30pm and is a great way to alleviate stress from classes. The class starts off with a warmup that consists of 2-3 exercises performed for a minute each and then transitions into two rounds of 3-4 different exercises for a minute each. Each set of exercises targets a different part of your body. The workout can prove challenging, especially for beginners, but you are almost guaranteed to feel a great pump afterwards.
Burns also instructs a newer class that was requested by students called Women on Weights that meets once a month on Saturdays at 7:30am.
“…[W]eight training is too often neglected, even though it’s such an important type of workout for females to participate in,” Burns said. “Weight training can help build lean muscle, lower body fat, enhance joint stability and most importantly, grow confidence.” This class is great for any women who are looking to learn how to use exercise equipment, or just want to work out in a calm, supportive environment.
Like this class, Learn to Lift is another class offered that is instructed by senior Navy ROTC, Matthew Gardiner. The class meets in October and November on Saturdays from 7:30-8:30am and teaches people how to use proper lifting techniques to avoid unnecessary pain or injury when lifting weights. The class is beneficial for everyone of all fitness levels. Matt also instructs another class called Power Hour, which meets every Wednesday from 6-7pm, usually at the Basilica. The class is versatile, and its goal is to gain strength through using one’s own body weight through a mixture of cardio and body weight exercises. Power Hour is structured to be a teamwork class for everyone and it is therefore easy to make friends with the people you interact with there.
Total Body Strength (TRX) is a new class that is taught by Cleo Kirila. It meets on Thursdays from 7-8am at the Kane Fitness Center. It is a “full body, total resistance, suspension training class that is personalized to meet your body’s needs,” according to the website’s official description.
If you’re looking to gain more mobility and flexibility, CUA’s yoga classes are just for you! There are morning yoga classes taught by Meredith Karam on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 8-9am, there’s also evening yoga classes taught by instructor Simone Mishler on Tuesdays from 6:30-7:30pm. Yoga has many benefits; it can help stretch your muscles and help you achieve equanimity.
The fitness department is looking to offer more classes in the future as Jess Murtagh, Assistant Director of Fitness, Recreation, and Sports states: “I am hoping to offer a Barre class, as well as Pilates class in the future. All of our classes are led by certified instructors, so if there are any students at the university with a group fitness certification like Pilates or Barre, and are interested in leading a group fitness class, please reach out to [email protected].” Jess is always happy to help anyone that has any questions about fitness opportunities on campus!
To join any of these group fitness classes, simply go to imleague.com and sign up with your school email address if it is your first time using the website. Click on the tab that says, “Group Fitness Classes” and sign up for as many classes that interest you. Sign up for all of them if you can!
The group fitness classes are a great way to stay active without going off campus and offer a refreshing variety. There are many benefits of joining a group fitness class, such as making new friends and gaining more motivation to achieve your fitness goals. So, go on and get sweaty!