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Ask an Expert In Print

Ask An Expert on Group X Programming


You have questions, we have answers. This month we spoke with Jessica Sander, a group fitness manager for the Sports Center at Chelsea Piers, on the latest in Group X programming. 

How does Chelsea Piers stay on top when it comes to Group X?  

JS: In order to stay on the cutting edge we are constantly experimenting with new workouts inside and outside the club. In addition, we also research fitness trends through the Internet, social media and industry publications. Fitness conferences such as East Coast Alliance are essential as well.

Currently, what is one of your most popular classes and why do you think it’s so popular? 

JS: Power Hour is currently very popular because it is a high intensity workout incorporating strength training, aerobic conditioning and anaerobic intervals using hand weights and the step.

Are there any new classes or programs you’re looking at putting on the schedule? Why are you interested in them?  

JS: We are interested in adding more fusion classes to the schedule, such as a rowing/SurfSET class, as this allows members to challenge their bodies in new and different ways in order to avoid plateaus. In addition, members have a chance to use equipment that they may not have known about before. We’re also planning to add more high intensity interval training and tabata because one of the top reasons people don’t workout is a lack of time, and these types of classes allow for maximum efficiency in a limited amount of time.

What’s the biggest challenge Chelsea Piers has had to overcome with its Group X program, and how did you overcome it?  

JS: One of our biggest challenges is keeping members present and excited in class. The landscape of fitness is constantly changing. You cannot be complacent with your programming. We are constantly evolving and encourage our instructors to be creative.

Has Group X had an impact on you personally? If so, how?  

JS: Yes. There is a performance aspect that is part of teaching a fitness class. As a dancer and fitness professional, group exercise has given me the satisfaction of helping others achieve their goals in addition to still being creative and using your personality to keep a room full of people engaged. It is a very rewarding experience.


Rachel Zabonick-Chonko

Rachel Zabonick-Chonko is the editor-in-chief of Club Solutions Magazine. She can be reached at rachel@peakemedia.com.

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