Workout Classes on Campus: From Aikido to Zumba

Harley Marks, Contributing Writer

Academic and personal success stems from not only a healthy mind, but also a healthy body. In order to ensure that every student is able to prioritize their physical health, the University offers a myriad of group fitness classes. No matter the workout type you’re looking for (fun, intense, peaceful, etc.), all are available for free in the Kenneth Langone Athletics and Recreation Center. Some of the intense classes offered include Bootcamp, Bison Ride, Warrior Ride, Warrior Sprint, H.I.I.T, Kickboxing, Tabata, Warrior Core, Zumba, and Positive Vibez. 

Bootcamp mixes traditional callisthenic and bodyweight exercises with interval training and strength training. The main goal of Bootcamp is to build endurance and support muscle growth. Intensity and energy are at the center of this workout. 

Requiring a similar level of adrenaline, the spin classes (Bison Ride/Warrior Ride/Warrior Sprint), are a fun, upbeat and accessible workout for people of all athletic abilities. These workouts consisting of hills and interval training are bound to keep you healthy and in shape. 

Yet another type of fitness class available on campus are the variety of H.I.I.T classes. These classes consist of step interval training and use a variety of movement combinations. This kind of high intensity training helps to keep your heart rate elevated and efficiently burns calories, guaranteeing a satisfying workout. Tabata is a type of H.I.I.T class where the interval training is aimed at bringing your heartrate up to a difficult anaerobic zone for short periods of time. With this kind of workout, you train every energy system in a way that traditional cardio cannot. 

Kickboxing is another class that provides a similar effect to a HIIT workout. This non-contact class teaches punching bag techniques to tone and sculpt the body. 

Warrior core is another intense way to train the muscles with less of a cardiac commitment. This class is a half hour of intense core work, paired with cardio movement. Despite the intense atmosphere of the class, it is designed and encouraged to all fitness levels. It is set to upbeat music, engaging the core while also introducing the body to new exercises. This class is a great way to fit a quick but challenging workout into your day. 

Zumba is a fitness class focused on combining exercise and dance. It is Latin-inspired and combines fast and slow rhythms to tone the body; no dance experience is required and all beginners are welcome! Zumba instructor Maddy Mallory ’22 says, “Fitness classes are very relaxed since it’s mostly students. A lot of the time I tailor my class to what the people who attend my class want.” The instructors for group fitness classes always prioritize the comfort of the attendees, so don’t worry about being forced out of your comfort zone. In a similar fashion, the one-hour full body class Positive Vibez (inspired by KAZAXE) is a dance-exercise class that uses a combination of international beats including dancehall, soca, acrobat, and more!

There are also group fitness classes that are more relaxed and restorative. Aikido, Barre Burn, TRX, Total Body Conditioning (TBC) and various forms of Yoga are all available. If you’re looking for a peaceful martial arts class, Aikido is an amazing option. Aikido involves the blending of attacks and collisions, but is done in a dynamic, powerful, and intricate way; this exercise engages the entire body. Barre Burn is another group fitness class option, and it utilizes the ballet barre to perform small, isometric movements that burn fat and sculpt muscles. This activity mainly activates the hips, thighs, glutes, abdominals and arms.

Similar to Barre Burn, TRX is a Suspension Training bodyweight exercise that develops strength, balance, flexibility, and core stability simultaneously. TBC is similar to TRX, in that the main priority is creating efficiency within the body. TBC is a low-impact exercise class that improves balance, coordination, agility and range of motion. The combination of exercise equipment and low-impact cardio has numerous benefits for your overall health. 

Lastly, yoga is offered frequently. You can choose to attend yoga during the day, at sunrise, or late at night! Yoga for Mental Health is also a class that is available and specifically catered to relax the mind. By learning guided breathwork, form alignment, strengthening postures, flexibility techniques, and brief meditations, these yoga classes will calm nerves, relieve bodily tension, and settle the mind. 

A highly popular fitness class within the University community is Bison Ride. “Every Monday and Friday afternoon my roommates and I go to spin class. It’s a really great addition to our day; the classes always have fun music and a great energy! The spin class that we go to is taught by two instructors that are always singing along and making sure everyone feels comfortable. We always know we will enjoy their class,” Emily Gresalfi ’23 says. 

Another junior, Natalie Paganelli says, “Spin class is the perfect way to get a break from my busy and stressful school work! The instructors are energetic and create a welcoming environment. Having friends to go with makes the whole experience even better!” Workout classes are an amazing way to bond with fellow students, experience new workouts, and release endorphins. “I like the group fitness classes because I don’t know what I’m doing in the gym so it’s helpful and easy to have an instructor there explaining what to do,” Juliette Morris, ’23 said.

If you are interested in becoming a fitness instructor, research the requirements for the class you wish to lead. “Getting involved as an instructor is very easy. I got certified to be a Zumba instructor online and practiced a lot on my own before getting hired. It is a great way to build working out into your schedule, to meet new people, and to have a job on campus!” Mallory said. A comprehensive list of the group fitness classes at the University can be found on the Personal Training, Wellness & Group Fitness Programs webpage: 

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