Family has fun & stays fit in new class

Amy Carton
Three Generations enjoying the same class at the Geneseo Community Center are from left: Wendy Christopherson, Sue Smithson and Tonii Brooks.

For three Geneseo women, they all had their own reasons for taking the kettlebell class at the Geneseo Community Center, but also had one in common, to spend time as a family.

Sue Smithson, her daughter Wendy Christopherson and her granddaughter Tonii Brooks are three generations of women who are having fun and getting in shape with this class.

“It was my idea to do the kettlebell class as a way to get ready for my wedding,” said Brooks. “Kettlebell is something I’ve been interested in and I heard it was a high intensity class.”

“I like working out and partnered up with Tonii to get ready for the wedding,” said Christopherson. “It is good family time, we push each other and if someone slacks off then we egg each other on.”

“I have a bad back and knee that I haven’t been able to bend for 10 years, but now I can,” said Smithson. “It is getting better. I use to go to the chiropractor twice a week and now I only go every three weeks.”

In the class, participants receive a full-body workout with cardio, core and resistance exercises while enjoying music and exercising at their own speed.

The kettlebell class is set up in a circuit-form type of class with five minutes of exercise and one minute rest before continuing that revolves around participants’ core.

“It is a great workout,” said Christopherson. “For the younger ones who want to be pushed and then our instructor Terry (Highton) is great about modifying the class. It is a great way to stay in shape and an all around great workout.”

“Terry is very aware of her audience (exercise and music wise),” said Brooks. “She is very knowledgeable and makes it fun. She really individualizes the programs and makes sure you get the best workout for your ability.”

“Terry modifies the class according to your needs and gives you something different to do if you can’t do a certain exercise,” said Smithson.

All three women say they enjoy different aspects of the class and have different reasons for what keeps them going.

“We all want to lose weight, and for me it was also about mobility,” said Smithson.

“It was an unsung class that you haven’t really heard about,” said Christopherson. “Some people are scared because they have heard horror stories, but it is a great workout. We are all pleased with the class and it is what you make out of it.”

“I always notice weight loss when I lift, and I was doing a lot of cardio before the class and didn’t notice that weight loss,” said Brooks. “Once I started the class I noticed a change. You just feel better, and muscle burns fat.”

For Christopherson, her biggest challenge has been working through a knee injury; while Smithson said her endurance has been her biggest hurdle to overcome, but she is improving. Brooks’ biggest challenge has been worrying about the class being canceled if there are not enough participants signed up.

“I enjoy being together, seeing each other and egging each other on,” said Christopherson.

“It is nice to see we can all enjoy a class together, and we all get a good workout,” said Brooks. “It is something we fell into because I wanted someone to do the class with.”

“I don’t want to quit and go back to where I was,” said Smithson.

“I love it and come try it,” said all three women.

The kettlebell class at the community center is offered Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m. and Saturdays at 8 a.m. For more information, call the center at 944-5695.