Water aerobics program creating huge splash at city pool this summer – Jacksonville Daily Progress

Posted: July 5, 2017 at 10:49 pm

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A new water aerobics program at Jacksonvilles Buckner Park pool has proven so popular this summer, city officials have given the green light to expand it from one to two days a week.

And assistant city manager Patty Crenshaw couldnt be more thrilled.

I knew it would be something the community would welcome, but I am really surprised at how it has embraced the program, she said, adding she was pleased by the response. When you offer something like this, you hope thats what theyre really wanting.

Already working with the American Red Cross to offer swim lessons and water safety classes, city leaders felt water aerobics might be a good way to round out its offerings this year.

Part of it was motivated by hiring Tonya (city recreation director Tonya Foluke), who had the talent and the training to be able to teach the class, Crenshaw said, noting the program began in June. The folks taking the class loved it so much, they asked if we could hold it two days a week.

The new class is definitely a popular one, Foluke agreed.

We held it from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesdays, and weve had 17 inquiries for more classes from that first session, she said, describing classes as real laid back.

According to http://www.phase-iv.net - a website operated by the Phase IV Health & Performance Center, which is dedicated to improving the health and lifestyle of people of all ages - benefits of water exercise include: high calorie burning during and after workouts; renewal of energy levels; stress/tension relief; lowered risk of stress-related injuries due to buoyancy of water; and higher workout intensity due to water resistance.

You dont need any special equipment, the site notes, adding that water exercise is not restricted by outside temperatures.

And, Foluke said, its good for people who have joint problems, who may be recovering from any type of surgery - the water softens the impact (of the workout).

Cost of the program is $40 per month or $10 per class, with two classes offered from 7 to 8 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday, beginning July 4. They will be offered throughout the month of July, with plans to extend through the month of August.

Meanwhile, water safety/swimming classes for all ages also resume on July 4, and will be held as a two-week session, with a second session slated to begin July 18. Classes will be held Tuesday through Friday, beginning at 8 a.m., 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. Cost is $40 per child per session; families enrolling more than one child receive a slight discount, at $30 assessed per child.

Courses, which are part of the American Red Cross swimming and water safety program, include Parent and Aquatics (for parents and children ages six months to three years); Preschool Aquatics (children ages 4-5); Learn-to-Swim (ages 6-12); and Adult Swim, for those ages 13 and older.

While swim lessons have been offered in the past in partnership with the YMCA, last year the department was scrambling to get the program into place, and ended up training its team of lifeguards through Red Cross.

I was very impressed with their water safety course - (lifeguards) have to pass a swimming test, a written test, have the ability to teach and must receive 50 hours of instruction, Crenshaw said, adding instructors began receiving training on June 19.

We had to wait for (several lifeguards) to finish school, so next year, we hope to stagger certifications so that every year, well be training someone for two-year certification, she said.

In doing so, the city will have top-trained instructors to oversee what Crenshaw calls a top-quality facility.

Were wanting to grow our aquatic program, because we have a quality pool, she said. We want to offer citizens inexpensive programs that have value (as well as provide opportunities for enjoyment).

We definitely want to implement programs that will help folks get into the pool, into Lake Jacksonville, and be safe while doing so, Foluke added.

Crenshaw agreed. If we can teach even the little guys about safety around water - if this helps to save one life - whatever the city spends on these programs is worth it, she said.

Those interested in lessons or water aerobics are invited to sign up during classes at Buckner Park pool, located at 119 Newbern St.

They also can visit the City of Jacksonville website, http://www.jacksonville-texas.com, or contact Tonya Foluke at 281-330-7568 to learn more.

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Water aerobics program creating huge splash at city pool this summer - Jacksonville Daily Progress

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July 5th, 2017 at 10:49 pm

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