If being a fan of strength and conditioning is like drinking the proverbial KoolAid, for students in the RaiseUpTheBar programs at Ross, Henderson and Guillen middle schools that drink now comes with an orange flavor.
The innovative fitness program developed in EPISD has a new partnership with OrangeTheory Fitness, a fitness studio that will provide a nine-week virtual membership to students so they can remain active during virtual learning.
Coaches at all three middle schools are working with OrangeTheory to supplement their fitness class and keep students moving from home.
“They are learning from a truly cutting-edge style of training that’s backed by science that offers amazing results rather quickly,” said Ross RUBT coach Bobby Macias. “OrangeTheory is one of the fastest growing gyms in the nation. Our local gym has been amazing by providing videos we can share directly to the kids – everything from a virtual tour of the space to explanations of the OrangeTheory method of teaching.”
Their coaches also give students weekly challenges so they can practice a certain move. Students watch demonstrations of the movements on screen while training.
“We are following their daily workouts, which are challenging, but also easy to follow by all of the members of our program including our special needs population,” Macias said. “The workouts never repeat and the bodyweight movements they are learning are plentiful.”
OrangeTheory gladly joined in, giving the students some different fitness options to stay active.
“One of our core values is community and during this time of online classes we wanted to make sure that not only adults were staying healthy, but also students,” said Brooke Boisson, studio manager. “Our hope is it helps break up the monotony of sitting all day.”
Boisson hopes the classes help students create a healthy relationship with fitness so in the future they can use it to start a routine, combat stress and strengthen their cardiovascular health.
“Our hope is the students still get a great education even if they are online, and in the future, they continue to move their bodies no matter what the world looks like,” Boisson said.
Macias approached OrangeTheory when the pandemic hit looking for ways to keep the RUBT bar going.
“I knew we needed to change things up a bit, so I went to different gyms once they opened and saw their approach to this new way of coaching clients first hand,” he said. “Fortunately, I went to Orangetheory myself and was blown away by their system and their approach backed by science designed to get a person’s heart rate in the optimal ‘orange’ zone.”
OrangeTheory is one of many fitness organizations that RUBT has partnered with over the years. Get Lifted, RKU, and Flip Fit gyms RUBT has partnered with in its quest to fight childhood obesity, bullying, and current problem of isolation resulting from social distancing.
“Even more than that we are giving so many kids an opportunity to try something that they might otherwise never get the chance to do,” Macias said. “The kids are loving it and are all very sore, which is great since many have been sedentary during quarantine.”