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Creative Ideas That Inspire

by Joy Keller on May 18, 2010


Enliven and reinspire members with thoughtful approaches to class design.

Equinox in New York City spices up its pool-based programming with Brazilian Body Surf and Hydro Dance Party.The former is “a combination of cardiovascular and muscle conditioning drills taught using water resistance.” The latter is a “cardiovascular workout set entirely in the water.” This class plays a variety of music styles, from salsa to hip-hop. No dance experience is required.

Washington Athletic Club in Seattle finds many different ways to use the TRX® Suspension Trainer. One example is Cy-TRX®. According to the online schedule, participants begin the 55-minute class on stationary bikes, then transfer to TRX suspension apparatus and then return to bikes for “a power-packed, plateau-busting, sweat-inducing workout.”

Road Rage takes indoor cycling to a new level at Tulsa Community College in Oklahoma. This 45-minute, high-intensity cycle class features a series of simulated climbs, sprints and other drills paced to push the anaerobic threshold. Horns are not included.

Keeping in mind the custom needs of its members, the recreation center at the University of Northern Colorado offers many different classes, each with varying length and focus. Ultimate Upper Body, for example, hones in on strength training for triceps, biceps, shoulders, upper and lower back and chest in 25 minutes. Most of the classes on the online schedule also feature a link to a sample video, so the member can view the class in action.

STROLLGA is a new format from IDEA member Kristen Horler, CEO and founder of Baby Boot Camp®. This 55-minute yoga-inspired fitness class for moms and babies combines yoga with a “new prop”—a child in the stroller. “Pregnant moms as well as highly conditioned moms appreciate the benefits of a class entirely dedicated to stretching and breathing, while spending time closely interacting with their child,” says Horler.

IDEA member Emily Belanger says the most popular class at the Strong Body Studio LLC in Agoura Hills, California, is Cardio/Fusion Pilates. According to Belanger, this class, which is limited to 5 people, combines “intervals of coached cardio (think indoor cycling–type coaching for resistance and speed), along with intervals on the Pilates reformer and tower. Cardio/Fusion combines strength and flexibility training with core-strengthening cardiovascular conditioning for “an intense and satisfying hour,” Belanger says. “The final cardio piece always includes short-burst training to jump-start the metabolism and carry the metabolic ‘bump’ well beyond the workout.”

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About the Author

Joy Keller

Joy Keller IDEA Author/Presenter

Joy Keller is executive editor of IDEA Fitness Journal and IDEA Fit Business Success, and is also a certified personal trainer, indoor cycling instructor, yoga teacher (RYT 200) and Reiki Master.