Pump it up on Zoom or in person

Quinnipiac’s Fitness and Recreation instructors have been hard at work these past few semesters, teaching classes online and recently, in person.

Lexi Pepe, Staff Writer

Connor Lawless

As the cold weather and ongoing pandemic confine students to their dorms, Quinnipiac University fitness classes are operating both virtually and in person so they can practice self-care.

Types of classes

Quinnipiac offers a variety of fitness classes to take whether you are looking for something fast-paced to get your heart pumping or something more relaxing to find your inner zen.

Yoga has many benefits as it improves balance, strength and flexibility whereas Ugifit can be considered as the complete opposite. Ugifit is an intensive class offered and taught in person by Una Cooper, an occupational therapy graduate student. Throughout the class, you carry a weighted ball and incorporate it into the entire routine for 30 minutes.

“Usually it can be six pounds, eight pounds, or 12 pounds,” Cooper said. “It doesn’t sound like a lot of weight but when you’re constantly moving with little to no break in between each exercise, it picks up quickly.”

Cooper encouraged students to try out this class  as a fun way to stay active between classes.

Over the winter break, Ally Kocherspreger, a senior in athletic training major, hosted a High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) Bootcamp via Zoom.

“I did a lot of cardio and mixed it with a body part,” Kocherspreger said. “One day I would do cardio, chest and arms, another day I would do legs, another day, abs. I would try to make each workout a little different.”

Kocherspreger is also Athletics Fitness Association of America (AFAA) certified, which means she can teach group fitness and spinning classes. Now that the semester has started r, she is back to teaching spinning classes at the Rocky Top Student Center.

Working out with a mask 

Even though we all wish the world would just go back to normal, masks are required in all fitness classes to keep one another safe. 

“It is difficult working with a mask but at the same time, I’m so used to it now,” Kocherspreger said. “The people who take my class have respected the mask protocol. Luckily, I haven’t had any issues which is really good.” 

Cooper said she makes an effort to project her voice through the mask as gym goers, student-athletes and even fitness instructors must comply with the mask rule due to health regulations. 

“I try to make an additional effort to demonstrate what’s going on as best as I can because if someone is in the back of the class and they can’t hear me through the mask, at least they can see and carry on through the exercise as much as they can,” Cooper said. 

Both Cooper and Kocherspreger have found it easy to make a connection while teaching on Zoom. It creates a safe environment for those who are shy and may want to have their camera off but still participate. Kocherspreger also has an Instagram account, @justahungrygal_, where she posts information on maintaining a healthy diet or workouts to do in your spare time.

If wearing a mask while working out is uncomfortable or if you want to try out your first class, I recommend attending virtually. Students can still take care of their bodies and minds from the comfort of their room and can even have their roommate join in to enhance their experience by finding a physical activity you both enjoy.

Connor Lawless

The importance of fitness

During COVID-19, Quinnipiac students have been asked to stay in their dorm rooms, social distance, wash hands and try to remain healthy. However, it is important to make sure you are taking care of your physical and mental health. Being trapped in a confined space can negatively impact one’s physical and mental health. 

“Fitness classes are so important because it changes up the schedule a bit,” Cooper said. “It gets the body moving, gets those endorphins going.” 

Whether you are in a dorm or bedroom, it is healthy to get out once in a while.

“A lot of students who are remote have classes back to back and that means you’re not getting that walk from one building to another,” Cooper said. “Those 10 minutes outside can be important when you are glued down to a desk or wherever they’re doing their work from.” 

Kocherspreger said she has always been a huge advocate for fitness as it can take care of the mind during these hard times. 

“When I was younger I perceived fitness as more for physical activity and enjoyment,” Kocherspreger said. “Now, it is such a mental clarity for me and especially now when everyone’s emotions (are) at an all-time high.”