Communiversity finds new way to promote staying active

For the past two weeks, the Office of Communiversity has been hosting hour-long Zumba exercise sessions for APU students at the Dillon Recreation Complex.

“The idea for Zumba came from trying to get more women involved in intramurals,” Assistant Director for Campus Recreation Jeremie Riggleman said. “We know that group fitness can be more attractive to some women than team sports, so our staff decided to try Zumba.”

According to sparkpeople.com, Zumba is a Latin-inspired, cardio-dance workout that uses music and choreographed steps to create a fitness party environment.

In each session, accompanied by music like Britney Spears’ “Womanizer” and David Guetta’s “Hey Mama” blasting from the speakers, APU students execute various dance moves to exercise certain parts of their body, such as abs, biceps and thighs. The atmosphere is lighthearted and fun as each participant mimics the instructor while following the beat.

“[The instructor is] really energetic, and it’s a good workout,” sophomore psychology major Ashley Barragan said. “I hate running, so doing Zumba is more fun.”

A total of 50 people signed up to take the class, which was offered this year for the first time. Encouraged by the popularity, the Communiversity staff members immediately decided to keep the momentum going. “We’re trying to figure out logistically how we can do [Zumba] next semester because everybody seems to love it,” Jessie Klinger said, Communiversity intramural intern.

The instructor, Olga Acosta, teaches Zumba at Triad Fitness on North Citrus Avenue. She attributed her enjoyment of each session to how fun her students are. “That’s what I like,” Acosta said. “The energy’s amazing. They give me energy.”

“I was pretty impressed with how the girls took part in the different songs that Olga was playing,” agreed Carol Zurla, Acosta’s assistant.

Acosta has been teaching Zumba for six years and Zurla for three. After this semester’s Zumba sessions end, Acosta hopes to return and continue teaching APU students this fun and energetic way to stay active.

“If its success continues, we may offer more weekly Zumba opportunities, as well as yoga and so on as part of a more all-inclusive campus recreation program,” Riggleman said.

Sessions are held at Dillon Recreation Complex at 6:30 p.m. each Thursday. Although registration for current sessions is now closed, check back with Communiversity for more classes in the future.

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