Electronic dance music amps up cycling class
Tuesday, September, 24, 2013; 11:58 PM | | |
The beat drops and a chorus of excited cheers reverberate through the dark room. Sweaty bodies pulsate to the deafening music, while neon clothes glow under the blacklight.
But this isn’t a scene from a dance club downtown — it’s CLUB CYCLE, a unique group fitness class held in McComas Hall’s Spin City.
CLUB CYCLE is a twice-weekly cycling class that mimics a dance club atmosphere by playing Electronic Dance Music (EDM) and incorporating dance moves with the traditional spin workout.
The idea behind the innovative class came to Ph.D candidate and fitness instructor Jordan Hill when he stepped inside the Spin City workout room in 2011. He knew he could use the space to combine his two loves: fitness and EDM.
“I was blown away by the high quality sound system and the awesome lighting configuration,” Hill said. “It’s just like a club.”
Hill, who is originally from Colorado, was also inspired to create the class because he saw the lack of an EDM community in Blacksburg — a sentiment echoed by CLUB CYCLE regular and junior finance major, Sarah Kowarski.
“As someone who was already passionate about EDM, I came to Blacksburg and I couldn’t find any outlet for it,” Kowarski said. “But when I came across this class, I was like ‘This guy knows what he is doing.’”
According to Kowarski, Hill is always up-to-date on the latest EDM music.
Much like a DJ, Hill said that he uses new music in every workout. Since the class started in January 2013, Hill has created over 42 fresh set lists for his classes.
Hill also plans the workouts much like one would choreograph a dance.
“The other vision behind (CLUB CYCLE) is that when I listen to electronic dance music, I want to dance,” Hill said. “So the whole goal was to develop a way that we could move a lot more than you could ever move on a real bike or in a traditional spin class.”
With this in mind, Hill choreographs dynamic routines that involve various upper body motions and leg isolations, which requires slower movement of the legs. According to Kowarski, this makes the class a total body workout.
“We are going left to right, working on core strength and balance, and then going into a full sprint,” Kowarski said. “It is crazy intense and definitely one of the best cardio workouts I’ve ever done in my life.”
Due to the intense nature of the class, Hill describes it as an intermediate to advanced-level cycling class, however anyone, including beginners, is welcome.
That is, if they can get in.
A version of this article appeared in the Sep 25 issue of the Collegiate Times.