A new aquafit instructor has joined the team at the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex.
Alexandra Kelly, known as Aquafit Ali by her students, recently moved from Surrey to Williams Lake after being accepted into the Thompson Rivers University nursing program.
In Surrey Kelly taught aquafit classes to groups of sometimes more than 100 people. She’s also been involved in competitive swimming and has taught swimming lessons.
“I have been teaching aquafit for three years now,” she said. “I kind of just fell into it because I just wanted to try something new. Many of the lifeguards who have been at the South Surrey Indoor Pool where I worked had also been aquafit instructors for years, and some of them just encouraged me into it.”
Once she started teaching classes it was easy to fall in love with, she said. It’s also a form of exercise she thinks people should try.
“Exercising in the pool improves your circulation, minimizes your impact, maximizes your resistance and you can still get a great cardio workout,” she said. “Aquafit is amazing because it can cater to individuals of all different activity levels.”
“I think the misconception that it’s easy either comes from people who have never given it a try, or from taking a class that did not cater to their activity level.
“The pool setting in itself is a great place for a workout, in my opinion. You finish your workout and you can enjoy a sauna or hot tub session before you head home. It’s the perfect recipe for stress relief.”
She said she tries to tailor her workouts to the participants that show up for a particular class.
“If I know the majority of my participants have hip replacements or knee injuries I will try to do mostly deep water exercise,” she said. “If my participants are all able-bodied and want an intense workout with segments of jumps, then I will run a class primarily in the shallow end.
“Even though I’ve only been in Williams Lake a few short weeks I have already had the pleasure of meeting a number of participants who, if I am doing shallow aquafit and they don’t feel up to it, will just follow my instructions in deeper water and listen to what their body is telling them.”
Drop-in aquafit classes at the Sam Ketcham Memorial Pool go Mondays from 12 to 12:45 p.m., Tuesdays from 1 to 1:45 p.m. and from 8 to 8:45 p.m., Wednesdays from 12 to 12:45 p.m., Thursdays from 1 to 1:45 p.m. and from 8 to 8:45 p.m. and Fridays from 12 to 12:45 p.m.