Exercise to a beat

By Linda Dillman
Staff Writer

Instructors Jill Amos (front) and Apryl Warner (rear) lead a cardio drumming class outdoors. Free classes are held outside when the weather cooperates and indoors when inclement weather sets in.

What do a bucket, ball, and drumsticks have in common with a workout?

They are equipment for cardio drumming, a form of exercise that incorporates choreographed movement to music in a fresh and fun way by pounding an exercise ball held in place by the bucket.

“No, you don’t have to be coordinated to do this,” said Jill Amos, who teaches a free cardio drumming class at locations in Canal Winchester, depending on the weather. “Cardio drumming gets your whole body moving for the entire workout. The great thing about our class is that you can modify it to your ability. Depending on what you put into it, it will get your heart rate up, burn calories, and it gets you outside.”

Amos said a few years ago the owner of Impact Nutrition hosted a class. Amos and a fellow drummer were asked if they were willing to take over the class and a year and a half later, they are still drumming, along with like-minded enthusiasts.

When the weather is good, a drum line of buckets, balls, sticks, and drummers stretches across Impact’s parking lot. When the weather turns bad, action moves indoor in Hope United Methodist Church on Columbus Street.

“Cardio drumming classes and the friends that we have made are such a motivation to me,” said Amos when asked why she enjoys the unique form of exercise. “Creating or learning new songs keeps us engaged in the workouts as well. Everyone has days where they don’t want to work out, but knowing that our friends and new guests will be coming is a great motivator.”

When asked why someone should consider cardio drumming, Amos let her students do the talking, who said ‘you get a good workout without feeling like you are working out, are motivated by others not to quit and a community of friends that have one vision and fun while doing it.’

One student said she did cardio drumming during her pregnancy because she could cater the exercise to her ability and how she felt at the time and that it helped with post-partum recovery.

According to Drum Helper, before cardio drumming became a mainstream form of exercise, it was used by rock drummers as a way to warm up before gigs and concerts. It started in Japan and was inspired by Japanese Taiko drums.

It is a form of all-over exercise, from school children burning off pent up energy merely by hitting a ball held stationary in a bucket to older adults who can adapt their movements to their personal preferences and needs.

Free classes are held every Tuesday and Thursday from 5-6 p.m. behind Impact Nutrition on Waterloo Street. There is no sign-up. Loaner sets are available to try out before purchasing equipment.

“You just have to find your motivation to try something new,” said Amos. “To get a loaner set you just have to call the store (740-243-5465) and they will let us know to hold a set for that night.”

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