BY JUSTIN FORD
DrumFIT is an exercise program that has been growing and expanding over the past eight years, and for good reason.
It is a program for the body and mind that’s been offered at schools as a physical education activity – and still is. But now – with people constantly asking where they can do DrumFIT outside of school walls – president and chief executive officer Danielle Sherbo has opened a DrumFIT studio in Waterloo.
“It’s hugely taking off,” Sherbo said. “People kept asking where they could do it.”
The people asking finally have a concrete answer. DrumFIT opened up shop on Sept. 1, and since then they’ve been getting a wide array of customers – everyone from ages two to 102 according to Sherbo.
DrumFIT is the brainchild of vice-president and chief operating officer Val Shah and a former partner. In its simplest terms, DrumFIT combines drumming and exercise. Each participant is given a pair of drumsticks, a workout ball, a catchy beat to drum along to and an instructor to guide them through their DrumFIT experience.
“They’re working their fine motor skills and don’t even know it,” lead instructor Rachel Cowal said.
The family class that took place on Sept. 24 was obvious proof of what they preach. There were six-year-olds having the time of their lives and adults being physically and mentally tested while trying not to crack a smile, but every single person in the room eventually caught on. There was sweat and laughter, heavy breaths and drumsticks pounding, and ultimately, the entire room was absolutely captivated.
“It’s another way to get my son active and move around to music,” said Waterloo native and DrumFIT participant Elisa Nelson.
When Sherbo says it’s a workout for the body and mind, she’s also hinting at something else. We live in a fast-paced world. A world that has stress and anxiety waiting around every corner. Dealing with that stress is key to maintaining mental health, and what better way to release stress than hitting things with a smile on your face?
“We’re the most stressed out society ever,” Sherbo said. “We have a really big need for things that address our mental health.”
Another sweetener to what DrumFIT already offers, is the program’s shocking ability to involve and envelop troubled children.
Sherbo said teachers have come up to her in complete shock after DrumFIT classes at elementary schools. They have confessed they thought it impossible for certain students to become engaged. Sure enough, their doubts were squashed.
“Boys. Boys like to hit things,” Sherbo joked about why the program engages anyone and everyone.
The DrumFIT studio, located at 606 Colby Dr., offers one-day drop-ins and eight-week memberships. For further information, call 519-574-2267.