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BCS: I’m Doing This for Me, Part 3

Thursday, April 28th, 2011

This is the last in a three-part profile series on Butler Community School attendees and their favorite classes.

As the Schools Communication Associate, I spend a lot of my day talking with people about everything we have to offer at the Butler Community School. From Broadway Jazz and Yoga to Hula and Zumba, there’s so much going on that I pretty much live and breathe BCS. At the end of the day, you may think the last thing I’d want to do is actually take a class … but that’s exactly what I do!

Talking with some of our regulars and finding out what they love about our classes at BCS made me realize that I’m just as much of a regular as they are… Most weeks you can find me taking Ballet Fit, Arms & Abs, Yoga, Zumba and Pilates Cardio.

Pilates Cardio

All of the classes I take on a regular basis lean more towards fitness than dance, but I still absolutely love them. This really surprised me because in the past, exercise was always something I dreaded doing. In fact, if I could, I would find any excuse not to do it.

I think the thing that makes the difference here is I never feel like I’m exercising. One of my favorite classes is Ballet Fit. The class mixes basic ballet technique with strengthening and toning exercises. After a plié combination at the bar, you’ll hit the floor for a series of abdominal exercises that you’ll definitely feel the next day. Every class is different so you never get bored or feel like you’re always doing the same routine.

Despite it being an incredible workout, the thing I like most is that I always feel like I am indulging my inner child. And trust me, she always gets a kick out of pretending to be a graceful swan. Elise and Emily, the instructors for Ballet Fit, are always encouraging and really strive to make sure that everyone’s having fun during the workout. Thanks to their upbeat personalities and the nature of the workout, I feel energized every time I walk out of a class. Who wouldn’t want to be a beautiful swan with killer abs?

BCS: I’m Doing This for Me, Part 2

Thursday, April 21st, 2011

This is part two of a three-part profile series on Butler Community School attendees and their favorite classes. Check back in next Thursday for part three!

In the lobby and hallways of Ballet Austin, waiting parents is a very familiar sight. For many of them, Ballet Austin has become like a second home because their children take class in the Academy as many as six days a week!  One of those waiting parents, Deb Haas, decided to use that time for herself, and signed up for yoga classes at the Butler Community School.  Here’s what she had to say:

“As a working mom, squeezing in time for exercise was always challenging, so the idea that I could use my time waiting for my daughter in a productive way by taking a fitness class really appealed to me.  I had back surgery several years prior to starting my yoga classes at the BCS, and had lost a lot of range of motion and flexibility.

My favorite classes are definitely the yoga classes taught by Michelle Thompson and Zakkiyah Kareem. They are both such great teachers, and have so much patience.  However my day had gone up until that point, it immediately improves when I sit down on my yoga mat.

Since I started taking yoga regularly at the BCS, all of my back pain has gone away, and my strength and stamina have really improved. Michellle and Zakiyyah are wonderful – and I really miss seeing them if I don’t make it to class, and I can tell both mentally and physically that I just don’t feel as good.

Taking yoga class with members of the Ballet Austin Company and staff is such a fun thing.  I’m certainly not in the same kind of physical shape that they are – but there is absolutely no judging or competition in the yoga classes, which makes me feel very comfortable and at home.  When I don’t make it to class, one of the regulars will often stop me in the hall and say ‘missed you last class’ – and it just adds to that good feeling that I get from participating.”

BCS: I’m Doing This for Me, Part 1

Thursday, April 14th, 2011

This is part one of a three-part profile series on Butler Community School attendees and their favorite classes. Check back in next Thursday for part two!

Since the opening of the Butler Community School in 2007, over 2,500 people have participated EACH year in the wide range of dance and fitness classes, courses and camps that the BCS offers. People of all ages come to the BCS for an ever-changing, wide variety of reasons – many are looking to dance and have fun, while hopefully learning something new along the way. Others often have fitness on the brain and just want to get some exercise in an encouraging group setting.

You’d think it would be simple to tell the difference between these two groups, but it’s actually much harder than you would think. Whether you walk by a Hip Hop class or a Pilates Mat class, you will always see smiling, laughing people. As the Schools Communications Associate, I wanted to find out why people were having so much fun – even while exercising! This week, I decided to ask one of our BCS regulars, Patty Koebele. Patty, who signed up for a Pilates Mat Course on the suggestion of a friend, now takes four courses AND has an unlimited BCS Class-Card. Here’s what Patty had to say about what brought her to the BCS, as well as her experience since then:

“I had just finished a round of physical therapy for severe back issues and I wanted to augment that with additional core strengthening, which Pilates provides. I was thrilled with the amount of pain relief I received from the Pilates exercises. I am very pleased with the strength, control, and flexibility I have gained. As a woman, I also prefer the longer, leaner muscles I am building, which still provide strength without the bulk.”

Ballet Fit, Butler Community School

“Currently, my favorite classes are Ballet Fit and Pilates, but I also take Yoga and Zumba. I take classes or courses most days of the week and there are several reasons I keep coming back. First, I have to say the instructors are absolutely phenomenal! Their knowledge and experience are only surpassed by the fact that they really care about the students. I have now come to consider them friends and truly appreciate everything I have learned from them. Secondly, at BCS I have met some amazing fellow students with whom I laugh and have a ton of fun! Finally, I [am never] bored. The variety is stimulating and each class has music that makes the exercise or workout fun.”

Ballet Fit, Butler Community School

“I initially came to BCS to glean relief from a back problem, but I have gained so much more. Through my experience at BCS, I not only feel better, am healthier, have added to my quality of life, have increased my life expectancy and hopefully even look better, but I am having a great time! I truly appreciate the staff, dancers, and students. There is something for everybody at BCS.”

 
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