The Rec Cen Multi-Activity Center’s part-hockey rink, part-basketball court will split its identity a third way beginning next week for the new group cycling classes.
Lacking other appropriate space for the campus’ new Schwinn exercise bikes, UCSB Exercise and Sport Studies Dept. Group Fitness Adviser and class creator Amy Jamieson secured the floor of the court for the seven new spinning classes. The courses, sponsored by the UCSB Department of Recreation offered at a charge to students and community members through Leisure Review, will begin April 9 through April 14 and continue eight weeks into the quarter.
Kim Allen, an instructor with 17 years of experience, said cycling is an ideal choice for people who do not want to take other aerobic classes because they may find it embarrassing, or because they have two left feet.
“Cycling is great because there is no choreography, no strange moves you have to do,” Allen said. “It is great for people who want to get an aerobic workout but do not want to take a traditional aerobics class.”
All classes are taught by certified and experienced cycling instructors and will be offered at varying days and times. Some classes are held once each week, while others are twice per week at a slightly higher cost.
At a demo held yesterday at the MAC, several students attended a free class to try out the new bikes. Third-year math major Kristen Calvin, and third-year psychology major Charlotte Goebels were among those in the demo class and both said they felt like the class was a great way to work out.
“The class is very good, it’s really nice that you get to work at your own level and set your own resistances.” Goebels said.
Jamieson said cycling classes are beneficial to students at any level of fitness because each cyclist can work at his or her own pace.
“All classes will start with basic drills and will become more and more intense as they progress,” Jamieson said. “Students get to workout at their own pace because you are always in charge of your own intensity level.
In addition, she said spinning classes are low impact on body joints and limbs, and focus on instead on cardiovascular stamina.
“Cycling is great for cross-training with other sports because it builds strength and cardiovascular endurance,” Jamieson said. “It is also a great workout for the core and abs.”
She said instructors will also make an effort to break the monotony of cycling on a stationary bike.
“To keep the classes interesting and not repetitive every class will be different,” Jamieson said. “Some classes will be uphill courses others will be endurance courses, etc.”
In addition, instructors will bring their own individual style to every class they teach. Instructor Barbara Chin said she uses mental exercises to motivate her students.
“I will use visualization techniques in my classes,” Chin said. “For example, having people visualize a race and try to pass the person in front of them in conjunction with the cycling exercises we do.”
Jamieson conceived the new class. She said she had to get approval from the Department of Exercise and Sports Studies in order to start the program.
“I went to Department Director Jon Spaventa and he gave his support for the program, and we also secured funding for the exercise equipment from the department,” Jamieson said.
Cycling classes are $40 for a one day per week classes or $65 for classes meeting two days per week. Those interested in signing up can do so at the Rec Cen Cashier’s Office or through mail-in registration.