Standing on the concrete at Brownwood’s Wiggins Pool, fitness instructor Lynn Humeniuk called out exercise commands to 11 swimmers one recent afternoon, keeping them moving almost constantly in the water.
She did it with a perpetual smile, clearly enjoying herself as she moved to her own commands as high-energy music pulsed from a sound system. The swimmers, though working hard, enjoyed themselves as well, laughing frequently and bantering with Humeniuk as they copied her movements. They used devices including noodles, kick boards, hand-held weights and exercise bands.
This was boot camp — Aqua Boot Camp, a three-week session for Howard Payne University students, employees and family members jointly operated by HPU and the City of Brownwood. They’re at Wiggins Pool four afternoons a week getting a workouts on cardio, strength and conditioning.
The swimmers who are HPU students are receiving college credit in kinesiology.
Longer sessions of Aqua Fitness for the general public, operated by the City of Brownwood, will begin June 1. There will be a nine-week session for $75, and a six-week session for $50. For more information, call (325) 649-8703.
Lifeguards are at the pool during the sessions, and participants don’t need to know how to swim.
Humeniuk said the buoyancy of the water enables swimmers to exercise without the jarring of joints and tearing of muscles, so they can exercise longer in water than they can on land.
Humeniuk is one of two Aqua Fitness instructors. She is the director of HPU’s criminal justice program and an associate professor of criminal justice and sociology.
Instructor Teresa Cavitt teaches in HPU’s kinesiology department, and recently received a master of education degree in sports and wellness leadership. Humeniuk and Cavitt are certified fitness instructors through the American Council on Exercise.