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New fitness option provided by tennis coach

Starting Monday the Bell Center will begin offering a new workout program called cardio tennis.

Paul Thomson, Drake University Women’s Tennis Coach, is leading the program.  He will incorporate tennis drills, ropes, ladders and cardio activities.  Students will also practice hitting tennis balls and perfecting their technique.  The program is designed for everyone.  No experience is necessary.  Current tennis players can come and perfect their skills, while new tennis players can learn the basics.

Thomson decided to start the program after he noticed an interest among current tennis players and regular students.  In past years, Drake University has offered a few cardio tennis classes, but most of the attendees were tennis athletes.  This year Thomson hopes to attract more students who are looking for a great workout.

Cardio tennis became popular in several specialty gyms in late 2008.  According to an article by The New York Times, traffic on www.cardiotennis.com increased by over 300 percent in the last year and articles in print publications on cardio tennis have received over 9 million views.

The workout is sweeping both the nation and the world. People love the fun atmosphere of having a hard workout that also seems fun. Cardio tennis is all about keeping your heart rate up. Players jump rope or run in place while waiting to be served a tennis ball.

Several local Des Moines area gyms offer cardio tennis classes with membership, but for students the bell center is the most cost effective place to receive cardio tennis classes.

“I’m always looking for a new way to workout, plus I love tennis so this is a win-win situation,” said sophomore Courtney Coleman. Coleman recently joined the tennis club but doesn’t have time to attend all of the meetings.  She hopes the cardio tennis sessions will be able to fit into her schedule.

“I love attending new classes and this one sounds really fun,” said Coleman, a health sciences major.  “Also the Bell Center is full a lot of the time so fitness classes help me workout when all the machines are taken.”

The program costs $10 per session or students can buy a punch card for $50 dollars that can be used for six sessions.  Sessions will be held on Wednesday afternoons from 5 – 6 p.m. and Friday mornings from 6:45 – 7:45 a.m.  All sessions are held in the Roger Knapp Tennis Center.

The program will run through Nov. 11 with another session in the spring.  Students are asked to bring their own tennis racquets and tennis shoes.

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