BY NANCY GAGNET | MIRROR REPORTER — Dianna Myers’ 12-year-old daughter Emileigh is not happy if she doesn’t go to her Fitcamp exercise class at Driven Fitness Studio in Maumee. The class is designed for people with developmental disabilities, and Emileigh, who has Down syndrome, looks forward to it every weekend, says her mother Dianna Myers. “She loves it,” Dianna said. “Her Sunday routine is church, then lunch, then the Fitcamp class. She really looks forward to it.” Dianna signed her daughter up for the class after learning about it through the Down Syndrome Association of Greater Toledo. The class has worked out well for the family, which lives in Fulton County, because according to Dianna, there isn’t much to do there on the weekends. “Emileigh has enjoyed making new friends and being with kids like her, who are on the same level,” Dianna said. Driven Fitness owner Jodi Walters founded the class to give individuals with disabilities an opportunity to engage in exercise designed especially for them. “I have a daughter with Down syndrome who needed fitness in her life. And I knew that there was a need in the community, because I did not see any program like this out there. Especially once they get older, you don’t really see it in a gym.” The class is designed to keep participants focused and engaged with songs they enjoy and activities such as games, strength training, stretching exercises and cardio training. “They are getting to know the routines and they’re comfortable. It’s really great,” Jodi said. “The end goal is to transition the clients to an integrated class since I am a firm believer in inclusion and believe wholeheartedly that individuals with developmental delays should be functioning along side with everyone else, not excluded.” The exercises are modified as needed, and extra help is available to ensure everyone is keeping up, enjoying the class and staying safe. The class currently accommodates 10 participants and Jodi is looking for volunteers interested in serving as buddies for the participants. “Once the class gets filled up, it can get a little busy in here and it’s nice to have more eyes,” Jodi said. Fitcamp classes cost $10.00; however, members of the Down Syndrome Association of Greater Toledo receive a 20-percent discount per class. In addition to the Fitcamp, Driven Fitness Studio offers a variety of fitness classes to meet the needs of clients from elite athletes to those new to exercise. The fully equipped Pilates studio offers TRX, yoga, Total Barre, personal training and private and small group training, Walters said. Winter Boot Camp began last week. The popular class includes circuit training, TRX, medicine balls, cardio drills and more. The eight-week session is open to everyone at a cost of $80.00 for the series or $10.00 for a drop-in class. This month, the studio began regularly scheduled Kangoo Jumps, a fitness class that uses rebounding boots for a low-impact, intense cardio workout. “It’s so much fun and nobody else in the Toledo area is offering this class,” Jodi said, adding that hers is a Kangoo-certified studio. A selection of boots will be available to use, but participants may also purchase their own boots. New yoga classes have also been added, including Mommy and Me Yoga, a class for moms and their children ages 2-6. The 30-minute class takes place the first Saturday of every month. A 60-minute Power Yoga class is also offered on Friday mornings at 10:00 a.m. The classes are $15.00 for a drop-in; $96.00 for a package of eight classes; $160 for a package of 16 classes and $192 for a package of 24 classes. Student passes are available for high school and college students. Fitcamp exercise classes take place on Sundays at 4:00 p.m. and the Boot Camp series takes place on Mondays at 6:00 p.m. The studio will also join Barr’s Public House for a Beer Yoga event to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The event, which pairs yoga with beer or another beverage of choice, takes place on Saturday, January 27 from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. at Barr’s, which is located at 3355 Briarfield Blvd., in a strip of shops near Driven Fitness For additional information, or to sign up for a class, please contact Jodi Walters at (419) 482-4847 or e-mail the studio at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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BY NANCY GAGNET | MIRROR REPORTER — The end of the school year often signals the beginning …