STORY BY SARAH GROSSMAN
Drake University group exercise is switching things up this year with an addition of the POUND class.
Founded by drummers Kirsten Potenza and Cristina Peerenboom, POUND is a mixture of cardio, pilates and isometric poses and movement.
Director of wellness Jana Peterson and assistant director Johanna Determann brought the program to Drake after discovering it at a conference last year.
“In November, Jana, my colleague, and I went to this conference in Florida, and these girls were a couple of the presenters,” Determann said. “We just kind of fell in love with it.”
All instructors must be POUND- certified, and to Determann’s knowledge she and Peterson are the only ones certified in Iowa.
“It is so fun, it sounds so silly, but it is so fun,” Determann said. We’re the only POUND pros that we know of in Iowa.”
POUND is a new and innovative way for students to exercise. It was created to workout in a fun way while still receiving a thorough workout.
“It’s just kind of a new twist on some exercises or routines you’ve done in the past, but it’s just totally refreshing because time goes quickly,” Determann said. “You work up a great sweat. It’s a great workout. It’s just unique. It’s like nothing we’ve ever offered here.”
Peterson hopes this new class allows more people to find their niche in the workout world.
“It is important for someone to find an activity or exercise class that they enjoy and connect with,” Peterson said. “This will keep you coming back and have activity be part of your lifestyle.”
As some students start group exercise for the first time, they are excited to become involved in a new workout trend.
“I’ve never really tried before so I’m kind of looking forward to it,” said Miranda Mouw, first-year pre-pharmacy student. “This is my first one. All I know is I’m going to sweat a lot, and I’m kind of into that stuff.”
The new POUND class is intended to bring a new category of people with different styles.
People interested in music and instruments may be drawn towards POUND.
“It’s a fitness routine that incorporates lightly weighted drum sticks called “ripsticks,” and you basically work out to about 12 different songs,” Determann said. “It’s a rhythm-based program so you find the rhythm and do squats, lunges, twists and jumps — most moves you do in a regular fitness class except you do it with drum sticks, and you do it to the beat of the music.”
The class meets at 4:45 p.m. Thursdays and 3 p.m. Fridays. The sessions last 45 minutes.
It is suggested, although not required, that participants bring their own yoga mats.
Overall, these classes are intended to bring creativity to group exercise.
“An exercise routine doesn’t limit you to cardio and weight equipments. There are many, many other ways to be active,” Peterson said. “Group exercise is an option that will keep things fresh and exciting.”