Baylor Bearobics makes fitness fun, stress-free

Littleton, Colo. senior Hilary Lewis teaches yoga at the Back to School Bearobics Bash, which took place Wednesday in the SLC Gym.  Robby Hirst | Lariat Photographer
Littleton, Colo. senior Hilary Lewis teaches yoga at the Back to School Bearobics Bash, which took place Wednesday in the SLC Gym.
Robby Hirst | Lariat Photographer
Ada Zhang
Staff Writer

Getting in shape can be an intimidating task, which is why Baylor Bearobics instructors try to make fitness fun and stress-free.

Bearobics offers a variety of classes such as Yoga, Zumba, Boxing, Pilates and more. From Tuesday to Sunday, Bearobics classes will be offered to students free of charge. This gives students the chance to meet instructors and see what different classes will be like throughout the semester.

To continue taking Bearobics classes after the first trial week, students must have a Group X membership, which also includes Bear Cycle, an indoor studio cycling class. Students must show their student ID to the McLane Student Living Center front desk to register.

The membership fee is $50 for one semester and members have full access to all Bearobics and Bear Cycle classes.

Bearobics instructors empathize with those who wish to stay fit in college. After all, the instructors themselves are fellow Baylor students.

Littleton, Colo. senior Hilary Lewis has been a Bearobics instructor for three semesters. She teaches either power yoga or regular yoga for an hour each day, three days a week.

“Regular yoga is easier and involves more stretching,” Lewis said. “Power yoga has more strength training.”

Lewis said her classes usually have anywhere from 10 to 25 students who attend regularly.

Lewis has been practicing yoga since high school, after she suffered a soccer injury. As an education minor, Lewis said she enjoys not only the fitness aspect, but also the teaching aspect of her job.

“I love yoga,” Lewis said. “I also love teaching, so I love getting to do both as a combination.”

Lewis said her classes offer students a way to relieve stress, take a study break or have quiet time to themselves. From her class, she said students will gain balance, mental strength, physical strength and flexibility.

Houston senior Francis Vu is a Bearobics instructor for zumba, a workout that is different from yoga in many ways.

Unlike yoga, which is more of a relaxation exercise, zumba is an upbeat and high-energy workout that incorporates elements of dance.

This fall marks Vu’s fourth semester teaching zumba. His class lasts an hour and is two days a week.

Before Vu became a Bearobics instructor, he was a Bearobics attendee. When he was a sophomore, his zumba instructor advised him to become certified to teach. Now, two years later, not only is Vu still doing zumba, but he is teaching others how to do it too.

“My job allows me to stay in shape and help others stay in shape,” Vu said.

Vu said he tries to make his class a stress-free environment where students can have fun. Part of that fun, he said, comes from the music. Vu choreographs his zumba routines to songs that are popular on the radio, songs that everyone is familiar with.

“When you do zumba, you get an amazing workout and time just flies by,” Vu said. “It is dance, but its so basic that anyone can pick it up.”

Vu said his typical class size is large, ranging from 45 to 50 students.

San Francisco, Calif. senior Kelly Hurd attended one of Vu’s classes last semester and encourages others to try it.

“Its one of the best workouts I’ve ever had,” Hurd said. “I was so sore the next day.”

Van Davis, assistant director for fitness and nutrition education, said Bearobics instructors will help students feel comfortable, especially if it is their first time taking a class. She explained how instructors let new students go at their own pace and rest when they feel tired.

Davis said students are placed in good hands with the Bearobics instructors.

“Their personality is what really makes the class,” Davis said. “What they bring to class is themselves and that’s what makes or breaks an instructor.”