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Group classes provide fitness alternative

Story by Katie Ericson

Recently, Gallup conducted a poll and reported that Americans are exercising less this year than last year. While last year in May and June, 55.2 percent of Americans were exercising for at least 30 minutes for three or more days a week, the number dropped to 54 and 53.8 percent, repesctively.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated that adults should exercise for either 150 moderately active minutes or 75 very vigorous minutes every week. This is only their cardio recommendation, however. They also suggest muscle-toning activities twice a week.

Sophomore Maggie Kuckelman agreed that exercise is an important part of college life.

“Fitness should definitely be a priority for any college student,” Kuckelman said. “A typical Drake student’s diet consists of Hubbell and the unhealthy, processed college staple foods like Red Bull or ramen. To stay healthy, exercise is a must.”

While fitting exercise into a college schedule can be difficult, Drake has taken this into account.

As Johanna Determann, the assistant wellness director at the Bell Center explained, “We offer classes at times that are convenient for our participants.”

Most classes are not offered during afternoon or morning times since students are usually in class. Instead, they are scheduled at night after classes let out.

Classes range from Zumba dancing to Yoga mornings to Boot camp workouts and hip- hop classes. They are taught by a group of experienced adults and students, and each class can be adapted to fit your own pace and level.

Sophomore Kim Hennen’s favorite class is kickboxing.

“I enjoyed learning all the moves,” Hennen said. “It also felt more like a work out.”

In addition, the Bell Center has an incentive program each semester — the Move More program. Students attend 20 classes and receive a free tank top. If interested, you can find a schedule of classes in the Bell Center or online.

As assistant director of wellness, Determann has seen a lot of students and has ultimately come to one conclusion.

“Exercising in college is very important,” Determann said. “I find that when people exercise they end up making better nutrition choices, manage their time more wisely and have less stress in their lives.”

Hennen agreed.

“I can’t go more than a couple days without working out. It makes me feel better and even helps me sleep more soundly at night,” Hennen said. “It isn’t just about looking good, it’s about feeling good mentally and physically.”

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