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Get on up: Fitness class geared toward kids 8 to 15

Salmon Creek Bridge Chiropractic has started class for an age range that experts say is in need of more activity

By , Columbian staff writer
Published:
7 Photos
Richelle Endres, 10, of La Center shows her strength during a kids fitness class at Salmon Creek Bridge Chiropractic.
Richelle Endres, 10, of La Center shows her strength during a kids fitness class at Salmon Creek Bridge Chiropractic. Amanda Cowan/The Columbian Photo Gallery

With so much fun technology available, it can be hard to get your kids off the couch.

A new exercise class through Salmon Creek Bridge Chiropractic is aimed at providing a fun but thorough weekly workout opportunity for kids ages 8 through 15.

The class, Fit Kids, is taught by trainer Kelsey Walsh, 29, who has a gymnastics background and studied early childhood development, human development and family science at Oregon State University. Walsh is also a Level I CrossFit-certified trainer.

“I want to make them fall in love with what they’re doing,” Walsh said. “So I’m going to try and get inside their heads and see what they’re looking for and try to design my workouts around that. My (goal) is to be creative with this sort of stuff and give them what they need, what’s going to make them better.”

The class comes at a time when kids and teens are becoming more and more sedentary. One of the most comprehensive recent studies on human activity levels, published in 2017 in an issue of the journal of Preventative Medicine, involved 12,259 Americans ages 6 to 85. That study found many children weren’t getting the recommended minimum amount of activity — 60 minutes per day of moderate to vigorous exercise.

If You Go

What: Fit Kids classes.

When: 3:15 to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.

Where: Salmon Creek Bridge Chiropractic, 13800 N.E. 20th Ave., Vancouver.

Cost: $67 per month for two sessions a week, $97 per month for three sessions a week, and $100 for a 10-time punch card.

Information: To register, call 360-574-5944.

For boys ages 6 to 11, 25 percent weren’t meeting that benchmark, and 50 percent of girls fell short. Among ages 12 to 19, 50 percent of boys didn’t get the recommended amount of activity, and 75 percent of girls missed the mark. That study even concluded that by 19, the average American was as sedentary as a 60-year-old.

Paul Reed, who owns and operates Salmon Creek Bridge Chiropractic, is overseeing Fit Kids, and the class includes a posture and functional movement assessment.

Merrily Aljets, an events coordinator with Bridge, said Walsh is a great teacher because she has an engaging personality, which is particularly important for teaching kids.

“She tries to make it more fun,” Aljets said. “She doesn’t want kids to come in and feel bored, to feel like it’s too hard. She wants them to have fun. She wants it to be the best hour of their day.”

Walsh said she’ll tailor the class to the students, depending on their deficiencies and areas that need work. The class started last week, so she’s still unsure of exactly how it will operate, but Walsh guessed Fit Kids would involve some exercise games, and different challenges that might not be present at your ordinary adult gym class.

Walsh explained this is an opportunity for her to pay it forward for all the exercise teachers she’s learned from in life.

“I remember all of my best instructors, and how they were fun and interactive. They asked about my day, my life and what I wanted to get out of this,” she said. “I want the kids to know that I’m on their side and I want them to enjoy what they’re doing, fall in love with this type of thing.”

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