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Fall Back Into Shape With Group Exercise Classes

By Sam Mullin ’18

Staff Writer


For just $5 per semester, group exercise classes are used by students who love working out or who want to get into shape but need guidance in doing so. The group exercise classes are taught by trained Merrimack students who are passionate about fitness and and helping others reach their fitness goals.

One of the six group exercise classes taught at the fitness center is BodyPump. BodyPump is a full body barbell workout with exercises that target the biceps, triceps, back, shoulders, chest, glutes, quadriceps, and abs.

BodyPump is taught by Junior Emily Daley, who has always had a love for fitness and wanted to find a way to motivate others to love it as well.

“After completing my freshman year at Merrimack, I wanted to find a way to contribute to my school’s community. Since fitness is a passion of mine, I set up a meeting with Matt (Director for Campus Fitness and Recreation) about available positions, he then encouraged me to look into BodyPump. That summer, I took a two-day certification course which not only taught me the program itself, but how to be a motivational leader.”

Daley teaches BodyPump on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays at 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Tuesdays. Classes are typically about 45 minutes of exercising and end with a cool-down and stretch.

“BodyPump allows individuals to choose a weight selection of their preference, making it as easy or challenging as you wish for it to be,” Daley said.

Boot Camp is another high-intensity class that is offered at the Fitness Center. Boot Camp is taught by Senior Jordan Vetter on Mondays at 7 p.m. and Wednesdays at 5 p.m.

“A typical boot camp class is high intensity with a wide range of full-body exercises.  Exercises are performed for 25 to 30 seconds with a few seconds rest in between.  Each exercise is performed 3 to 5 times, and sometimes super set with another exercise.  I like to balance weighted exercises with explosive body/light weight movements.  The goal is to build total body strength and stability while keeping the heart rate elevated,” Vetter said.

Vetter finds teaching group exercise classes to be very rewarding and loves pushing others to their limits.

“The awesomeness of group exercise is that you get to be surrounded by other people motivating you and encouraging you to keep going, and most people end up working harder in class than they would on their own.”

Vetter describes Boot Camp as a very intense class, but she built it that way so participants can watch themselves improve. Jordan recommends that everyone should try Boot Camp.

“It is all levels accessible, my motto is “Do what you can, just keep moving!”

Zumba is also offered as a group exercise class. Zumba is taught by Junior Megan McCoy, who has been dancing her whole life and found that dancing is what keeps her in the best shape.

“Zumba is a dance cardio class, using basic footwork and aerobic movements. It is essentially a dance party.”

McCoy loves sharing her passion for dance with others and recommends that anyone who likes to dance should try a Zumba class, whether students have a dance background or not.

“I really encourage my students to attend every class and push themselves to be better than the day before. Most people think they do have to be a dancer to take a Zumba class and that is extremely false. Most of my students are not dancers and love Zumba! Yes, it is dancing, but you need no experience to take a class.”

Zumba classes are Tuesdays at 5 p.m., Wednesdays at 7 p.m., and Thursdays at 5 p.m. and they typically last 50 to 55 minutes.

The Fitness Center also offers Yoga, Barre, and 30-minute abs classes. Students can sign up for classes in the Fitness Center.