New Year, New Ways to Exercise 7

Try stand-up paddleboard yoga, Fit4Mom or snowshoeing in Corner Canyon to liven up your life

Fit4Mom

When Shayla Streiff moved from Las Vegas to Utah three and half years ago, she had to live in Draper.  Nowhere else would do.

The reason: Fit4Mom had a location here.

“It’s such a big part of us,” says the mom of 4-year-old Lily and 2-year-old Liam about the pre- and post-natal exercise class for moms with kids in tow (or not). Fit4Mom classes, held at Draper City Park, have given Streiff such a sense of purpose and well-being that it dictated where she lived. Now she’s an eight-minute drive from the park.

“I get to exercise and talk to other moms who are just like me going through the same things. My kids make friends and have playtime every morning. We exercise and we all feel good for the day,” she says.

Moms wearing workout wear, most pushing baby strollers, meet weekdays from 9-10 a.m. in the park. During the winter months they meet at various indoor locations. The instructor-led routines vary, but involve combinations of strength training, cardio, a core workout, plyometrics, stroller barre (a class with weights that is a combo of yoga, pilates and ballet), walking/jogging, and stretching.

“There is no judgment here,” Streiff says. “These are moms at every [fitness] level and every stage in life—some moms are pregnant, some moms just had babies, some moms are running marathons. You can tailor the workout to your fitness level and the instructors do a great job at helping you do that.”

As the moms exercise, their kids do what kids do best—run around, play, or sleep in the stroller.

Streiff says it’s important that her kids see that she exercises on a regular basis and that exercise can be fun. During exercise routines, moms and instructors sing songs, blow bubbles and do other fun activities to keep kids engaged and happy.

“I love to spend time with my kids. They are my whole life,” Streiff says. “I don’t want to put them in a gym daycare and go exercise. I like that they are involved.”

The first two classes of Fit4Mom are free. Contact Nikki Day at 801.953.5727 or at NikkiDay@Fit4Mom.com. Their schedule can be found at SouthValley.Fit4Mom.com and on Instagram at @fit4mom_southvalley.

Stand-Up Paddleboard (SUP) Yoga

Try doing a downward-facing dog yoga pose…on a paddleboard…in the water. You’ll quickly learn that you can’t control the board. It moves with every wave and body movement. What you can control, however, is your awareness of even the smallest movements and your breath.

And isn’t that the essence of yoga?

“It’s a way to help find your balance with the breath, which is our anchoring system,” says AnneMarie White, a longtime yoga instructor who teaches stand-up paddleboard (SUP) yoga at Draper’s Treehouse Athletic Club’s outdoor pool and at local lakes in the summertime.

SUP Yoga is different than yoga on the mat. Poses that are easy on the floor may be difficult on the unsteady board and vice versa. Then there’s the wind, the sun and, of course the moving board to contend with. SUP yoga could be called the great equalizer since beginners and advanced yoga students alike do the same thing—fall off the board into the water.

“It takes the seriousness out of yoga,” White says. “Everyone falls off their board and it doesn’t mean failure. It means you just get back up again. You get to pretend you’re a kid again and have fun….”

White’s interest in yoga started 17 years ago after watching a yoga video with her husband, Jason, who she calls her biggest cheerleader throughout her yoga teaching career. She has been teaching for 15 years while raising three kids. Yoga’s image, says the Draper resident, has changed for the better over that time.

“It’s not considered fringe or alternative anymore,” she says. “It has become a regular practice for a broad range of people, from senior citizens to high-level athletes, seeking to enhance the connection with their body in a mindful way.”

In addition to teaching group SUP yoga classes at Treehouse’s outdoor pool May through September, she teaches private SUP yoga for groups, including girl’s-night-out parties, book clubs and companies looking to provide “strength-building exercises” for their employees. She’s even had couples do a SUP yoga date night. Her students range in age from 8 to 70 and include a lot of men.

Often participants are a bit nervous venturing out of their comfort zone into the water. That all disappears once they realize how fun and not-so-serious a SUP yoga class can be.

“People feel empowered after taking the class,” she says, not only physically, but mentally. “They aren’t afraid to try something new.”

For information visit Wasatchyogaandpilates.wordpress.com or follow White’s Facebook page at Wasatch Yoga and Pilates.

Winter hiking/snowshoeing program with Draper City Parks and Recreation

Corner Canyon sees plenty of visitors during the warm months, but come wintertime only a handful of people visit. Draper City Parks and Recreation Department hopes to encourage residents to journey through this winter wonderland through a program of weekly hiking/snowshoeing trips starting January 10 and continuing weekly on Wednesday and Saturdays throughout the month.

“Corner Canyon is a whole other canyon when it snows,” says Rick Anton who leads the hikes and works as a trails- and open-space technician with Draper Parks and Recreation. “It is very quiet, ice forms on the springs, and the snow on the trees creates a thick canopy.” And there’s the wildlife bonus: animal tracks are easy to spot as are golden eagles, who frequent the area in winter.

The idea, Anton says, is to get people to enjoy winter sports nearby, in a fun, inexpensive way.

Snowshoes and poles are provided when there’s snow. If not, participants will hike. The cost is $25 for four hikes, with each hike lasting between two and three hours. The outings are loop and/or destination hikes and cater to beginner to intermediate hikers 14 years and older.

“[Snowshoeing] is just a great way to get out, and it’s the easiest way to get out in the snow,” Anton says. “On some of the red air days, you can head up to the South Maple Hollow trails and you are out of the smog. You just put on snowshoes and go for it.”

Register online at Draper.Ut.Us or at the Draper Parks and Recreation Office in the lower level of City Hall, 1020 E. Pioneer Road.