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Thursday, June 1, 2023

Health 4-1-1

UH offers course credit for burning calories

For many college students, reserving a time between classes to work out can be a challenge, and sometimes it falls to the back burner. However, they have the option of getting college credit for a one-hour fitness class. These classes are available every semester under the Physical Education Basic Instruction Program.

“These classes can be a good thing for students who only have one or two elective credits left to graduate,” said Jack J. Valenti School of Communications academic advisor Orlando Zamora. “It’s better for students to choose these one-hour classes versus a three-hour credit class that costs more and takes up more time. (PEB) classes can be fun for them.”

Students can choose from indoor cycling, Zumba, combative sports, pilates, golf, gymnastics, beginning karate, racquetball, beginning tennis, soccer, weight training and rhythmic aerobics. There are also health, fitness and weight control hybrid classes to educate students about healthy lifestyles through class discussions and lab experiences. Course availability may vary by semester.

“Probably the greatest benefit is the external motivation of a grade,” said Health and Human Performances Program Coordinator Jessica Wheeler. “While most of our students know the importance of regular exercise and enjoy exercising, they say the only way they can fit it in to their schedules is to sign up for a class, because then they feel that they ‘have to’ show up.”

“Hopefully by the end of the semester they are able to see that they can fit regular exercise into their daily schedule and continue to live active lifestyles,” Wheeler said.

Classes are usually twice a week, and assignments are a mix of in-class workouts and online assignments covering the exercises in the class. For many of these classes, attendance is 50 percent of the grade.

“I signed up for my cycling class so I could have a scheduled time to really work out and not be able to just stop halfway, since it is for a grade,” nutrition sophomore Karina Araya said.

Many of these classes require students to create their own workout plan using the education they are given over the course.

“The students benefit from creating their own routines in class because it teaches them to be in control of the workout,” said indoor cycling instructor Joanna Macsas. “A lot of people do not feel comfortable creating their own workout programs and working out on their own, so having the requirement for them to create their own, during class, could help them to feel better in coming up with their own program.”

For students who aren’t interested in one-hour credit courses, the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center offers group exercise classes. For a schedule of group exercise classes, students can visit

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