Rodgers spins Oxy into shape

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Kacy Rodgers teaches PHAC128, Spin I at Occidental College in Los Angeles on Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2018. Nora Fujita-Yuhas/The Occidental

Struggling to find time to go to the gym now that midterms are in full swing? Occidental offers physical activities classes that help students stay on a set exercise schedule. One of these courses is spin class with Wellness Instructor Kacy Rodgers at the Spin Studio next to Jack Kemp Stadium. Spin class is a cycling workout coordinated with a set of songs, with routine adjustments to the resistance of the bike.

Rodgers teaches an approximately 45-minute spin class in the mornings from Monday to Thursday. According to Rodgers, the duration is fitting because anything over 50 minutes will exhaust the students. Rodgers began teaching the spin class four semesters ago when she a participant in the class as a community member. The instructor at the time asked her if she would take over the last four classes of the semester. She accepted the offer and has been teaching the class since.

Kacy Rodgers instructs PHAC128, Spin I at the Rush Spin studio at Occidental College in Los Angeles on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2018. Nora Fujita-Yuhas/The Occidental

Rodgers has implemented a specific method to teach her spin classes.

“The approach is to be as intense in that 45 minutes as possible, but I do mix it up,” Rodgers said. “Sometimes we’ll do a specific workout like hill and it will be a six-to-seven-minute stretch. I also change the type of workout every three and a half minutes or so, as the music changes.”

According to Rodgers, she likes to keep the session as quick and intense as possible, to the point where the mirrors fog up.

“I always like to finish with a sprint song, because it feels good to be done,” Rodgers said. “If you’re not sweating by the time you hit the sprint song, you’re sweating [after].”

Rodgers said that she chooses her songs carefully, recalling how difficult it was to spin to “Brown Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison in one of the classes she took in the past. She tries to keep her songs upbeat to keep it easier to sprint to the music.

According to Rodgers, spin class is a good workout because it can be as hard or as easy as the individual wants or needs it to be. Each rider is in charge of the resistance of their bike.

“It’s truly just moving as much as we can in 45 minutes,” Rodgers said. “It’s all based on how you want to challenge yourself. It’s a fun and easy workout … once your butt gets used to it.”

Rodgers enjoys teaching spin class in addition to acting and screenplay writing. She said she is most excited when she sees returning students in her classes.

One of these returning students is Katherine Begerow (senior), who began taking spin classes her sophomore year. Begerow echoed Rodgers, saying that her approach to the class brings an individualized workout and a positive challenge.

“Kacy definitely makes it hard,” Begerow said. “She’s really good at gauging the class and how it’s going. So if she sees everyone is having a really easy time, she’ll add in something that we all die on. It’s also because [of] the dials; you can make it as individualized as you want.”

Kelli Ann Kimura (first year) also agreed that she enjoies the individualized way Rodgers instructs the class.

“It’s kind of laid back in some ways,” Kimura said. “She lets you set your own pace. She guides you in terms of what she wants to do, like sprints versus other kinds of workouts on the bike, but it’s different if you want to control your own weight or how much you want to add.”

Begerow and Kimura said that Rodgers is one of the main reasons they continue to take spin class.

“She’s a really positive person, in general,” Kimura said. She has really good energy and I think that’s just what keeps you motivated to keep going.”

According to Rodgers, Begerow, and Kimura, spin class is convenient because they have a scheduled time to do their daily workouts as opposed to trying to squeeze in time for the gym.

Begerow said that Rodgers is a unique instructor because of the personal connections she makes with students.

“Kacy actually makes connections with a lot of the students,” Begerow said. “Kacy has fun with it and actually gets to know people. I love the lady, she’s great.”