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Fitness options available for your fall schedule

Fitness options available for your fall schedule

UNK offers variety of fitness classes
By Meg Housholder

As the semester winds down and students start to sign up for Fall courses, they should consider taking a course that doesn’t require a textbook. UNK offers fitness classes such as Pilates, Zumba, Yoga and TRX. Fitness classes provide students with certified fitness instructors teaching a variety of fitness classes to improve or maintain their fitness levels without having to leave campus. It gives students a chance to try a new activity in a safe environment.

Eve Scantling, senior lecturer for kinesiology and sports science, teaches Pilates and TRX. Pilates is a method of exercise that consists of low-impact flexibility, muscular strength and endurance movements.

The benefits of Pilates include improved flexibility, muscle tone, strength, breathing and posture. It teaches body control, promotes body awareness, reinforces mobile joints, builds better balance, conditions the whole body and improves aerobic conditioning.
“Every part of the body, from head to toe, gets a workout from Pilates, and all are equally trained. Your entire musculature is evenly balanced and conditioned, helping you enjoy daily activities and sports with greater ease, better performance and less risk of injury,” said Scantling.
TRX is a suspended training exercise that improves total body strength and stability. Scantling breaks down the benefits of TRX. She said TRX is suitable for all levels, versatile, improves cardio and strength, helps achieve any goal, engages the whole body, has a low-impact nature and it’s a different workout.
“Sometimes the monotony of going to the gym can be tedious, and we can often struggle to keep motivated with our fitness programs,” said Scantling. “TRX suspension training is unlike any other technique for working out and can be mixed into your normal training to liven it up. This will keep you engaged and looking forward to your sessions time and again.”
Scantling said getting to know the UNK students and to see their fitness levels improve has been the most rewarding part of teaching a fitness class. “I like when they get to a certain fitness level that they like the challenge of the work outs.”
Pat Philippi, lecturer for recreation, park and tourism management, said since she started teaching yoga, she’s become more patient and applies what she does in class to everyday life. “I hear from people that they’re not flexible enough to take yoga — they don’t need to be physically flexible but instead mentally flexible. Yoga and all fitness classes are not competitions; it’s just you!” Yoga is a spiritual discipline which includes breath control, simple meditation and the adoption of specific body postures.

Philippi said the most rewarding thing about teaching a fitness class is meeting students who are majoring outside of College of Education and Kinesiology and Sports Science. “I overheard a couple guys who said that since starting yoga class, they’d seen major gains in their squats.”
Kaela Samek, a senior family studies major with a minor in early childhood education, decided to take a yoga class to improve her flexibility. “I took this course because I needed to be more flexible, and I wanted to be able to start a habit for when I graduate,” said Samek. “The most challenging part about this course is there are some poses that I can’t do yet, but I want to be able to do. You have to push yourself over the limit.”
Samek believes UNK Fitness classes give students a good respite from average school curriculum. “It gives students a chance to take a break from the stress of college while promoting a healthy lifestyle.” 
Zumba is an exercise which incorporates dance and aerobic movements. Most Zumba classes have energetic music like hip-hop. salsa and mambo.  Lucas Troyer, a sophomore majoring in secondary education, looks forward to the days he has Zumba. “It gives me a vision of PE other than the typical ‘grab some basketballs and shoot around’ type teaching,” said Troyer. “It’s also a cheaper opportunity than an actual fitness class outside of school, and it helps stay me shape.”
All classes are free to employees who are UNK Wellness center members and students. Space is limited, and preference is given to students who are registered for PE 110 courses. The UNK Fitness classes schedule can be found online at

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