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5 of the Best Group Fitness Classes to Take at the Recreation Center

The Group Fitness classes offered at the Recreation Center are a great way to get involved in university activities that offer a safe and enjoyable environment to burn some steam after a long day of classes. Enrolling in a class is super easy! Make an account on IMLeagues using your school email and select the “group fitness” tab on the top left corner. There you can see all of the group classes offered throughout the day and even a couple days ahead. To sign up for a specific class, you click the green “sign up” button 24 hours ahead of time and register. All that’s left to do from there is show up on the day! I take advantage of these classes because for me, group fitness eliminates the social stigma that comes with working out and makes it more enjoyable

Zumba

Zumba is a fantastic way to get your body moving in a nontraditional workout manner. Yes, it builds up a sweat and yes, there’s a possible chance of waking up sore the next morning, but the environment alone is so worth it. Like almost every workout class offered at the Recreation Center on campus, Zumba incorporates fun pumped-up music that makes it easy to stick to the beat and still feel like you’re working your body. For me, Zumba was probably the most chill and enjoyable. It’s definitely a class to take with friends! 

Pilates

Pilates is a great way to get your body moving. It’s just as fun as Zumba, but it focuses on working specific muscles and helps with strength and endurance. Many of the specific workouts were centralized on abs and cardio. While the task itself is daunting, the music made it much more doable while still feeling like you were putting the work in.

Spin

Spin is one of the hardest workouts I’ve done. It’s an hour of straight cardio and you most definitely will work up a sweat. While the constant fast-paced movement can turn some people away, I 100% still think it’s worth giving a try. The spin environment is my favorite. The music is great and the disco lights are always on, which makes the whole experience worth it.

Full Body burn

Out of all the workouts I’ve done, full body burn left me the sorest, which was obviously expected. Over quarantine, YouTuber Chloe Ting became popular on her fitness channel. She would upload short 10 to 20-minute workouts that were easy, fast, and required little to no equipment. If you need something to compare full body burn to: it would be this. The class was easy, fast, and required a mat and some small weights (optional). 

Barre

Barre is another one of those workouts that specifically targets small muscle groups within your body, making sure to tone and strengthen them. With this class, you get all the work and none of the sweat. It was minimal fast cardio or movement but it still felt like I was putting the work in with each specific exercise. It also centralized on stretching and improving flexibility. For someone who almost never stretches before or after working out, it was very satisfying being able to both stretch and workout at the same time.  

These are only a few of the many different Group Fitness classes offered at the student Recreation Center on campus, so don’t hesitate to try one out when you’re looking for something to do. I know going to the gym can be quite daunting, but the group classes are focused on creating a comfortable environment for everyone. Almost every class is woman led and very nonjudgemental. If you’re looking for a way to get active, especially in the upcoming the winter months, I would 100% recommend any of these five classes!

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Abigail Hartman

U Mass Amherst '23

Abby's a Junior with a psychology major and a Spanish minor, and she loves anything true crime related!
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