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Fitness first

Exercise classes offer challenge, change

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July 19th, 2016
Tallgrass Creek residents stretch and strengthen in one of the community’s many weekly group fitness classes.

Tallgrass Creek residents stretch and strengthen in one of the community’s many weekly group fitness classes.

As Fitness Coordinator Camin Bell leads Tallgrass Creek neighbors in warm-up movements for her popular Stretch and Strengthen class, she reminds everyone that exercise feels better when you smile. That is not a problem for class participants as they listen and follow Bell’s instructions interspersed with humor.

“Camin is the best exercise instructor I’ve ever had,” says Esther Dritely. “She is delightful and makes you want to exercise and attend class.”

Challenge equals change

Others agree. Bell’s Stretch and Strengthen class was so well attended that several months ago, she added another session to the class. It now meets on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday mornings at 10:00. 

As gentle, contemporary music plays in the background, the class focuses on moving joints, both large and small, through their full range of motion. Class members use weights and hand balls to ensure all muscles get a workout.

 “A lot of residents come to my classes because they want to see a change,” says Bell. “I have often said, ‘If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you.’”

Workouts for everyone

Another fitness class started by Bell follows the weekly Thursday morning Stretch and Strengthen.

“I call it a ‘revolving’ class,” says Camin. “Each month, I focus on a different part of the body. We’ve focused on upper body, lower body, core muscles, and even self massage and maintenance exercises.” 

Another weekly class, Sit and Get Fit, involves a series of gentle exercises that help improve range of motion. 

Additional classes each week include Men’s Only Strength Training (M.O.S.T), gentle yoga, and antoher class Camin introduced called Dance Fusion. The coed dance class is 45 minutes of rhythmic movements set to music while participants stand, sit, or use a chair.  

“The dance class is one of my favorites and goes by quickly,” says Phyllis McCalmon. “You almost don’t realize you’re exercising.” 

Bell, with the help of Wellness Coordinator Cydney Cunningham, also produced several land-based exercise videos that stream on the community’s television station when she is away. All exercise schedules are available in the on-site fitness center.

Though Bell teaches 16 classes a week, she and Cunningham are always eager to help residents put an exercise plan together and demonstrate the multiple pieces of equipment in the fitness center. The two are also available for personal training sessions either on land or in the temperature-controlled indoor aquatics center. Five sessions cost $75, which can be prorated if a community member desires fewer sessions. 

“As with all exercise, progress comes with consistency, and it makes me happy when someone understands and wants that,” says Bell. “I’m a firm believer that physical and mental fitness go hand in hand.”

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