The Student News Site of Sonoma State University

Sonoma State Star

The Student News Site of Sonoma State University

Sonoma State Star

The Student News Site of Sonoma State University

Sonoma State Star

Need a break? Try Water Aerobics

Sonoma State welcomes Michelle Applegate as the new water aerobics class instructor. As a possessor of an Aquatic Exercise Association certificate, Michelle is an energetic and qualified instructor who wants the best for all her students. She refreshes her certification every two years and continues to learn more about how her profession can help people. With a carefully structured class and great energy, she aims to give her students a therapeutic end to their day through core exercises and engaged pedagogy. 

Applegate hosts a class every Monday and Wednesday from 11-12 pm at the pool near the athletic buildings on the northeast side of campus. Applegate loves to have an introduction for each day correlating to the workouts she’ll be instructing. Every class consists of warm-up cardio, an opening segment, water weights, upper body and core cardio, pool noodle exercises, and finally some wind-down stretches.

Applegate says that often workouts for women specifically focus on the lower body and legs. However, she prides herself on doing many core and back workouts covering head to toe. Applegate said, “I enjoy being silly and being myself so when people show up day after day, they loosen up. When we are adults we are told to be serious and I like having a cool and lax environment for my students.” Michelle then explains that there are different levels and goals for each student while she expresses that she loves to see students and their personal growth throughout the class, and how much joy it brings her being able to improve people’s lives. 

“She keeps the class ‘fresh’ by researching new routines and changing up her music. Her energy and positive energy motivate us to work out while having fun. I believe she would be a good addition to any classroom as she will lead the students with patience, enthusiasm, and kindness,” said student Carole Guzman.

She says her students treat it like therapy, and they get to come in and get a full workout and see their friends. “I consider myself the mother hen of the class since I know all their names and many of their goals are similar in that they want to get stronger. I like to show up for them and coordinate the class based on what they want to focus on.” Applegate always pushes herself to have the class laughing and smiling at the end of the day because then she knows she’s done her job well. She enjoys having a positive effect on these students because it puts people in a position where they now have a chance to help others as well. 

“She immediately knew that nothing would make her happier than to become a teacher. She told me that she knew she was making a positive impact on students’ lives, and she derived much satisfaction and joy from the looks on their faces,” says student Bobbi Kahn. 

“I love to give them feedback,” said Applegate, “and I always want them to give me comments after class so I can apply improvements in future classes.” She finalizes by expressing that joy that it brings her to be able to get this feedback because it makes her a better instructor. “The people that push me the most are the ladies that keep coming back. I enjoy the trust and the diversity of activities that help these students throughout their lives.”



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About the Contributor
Nathan Molina, Staff Writer
Nathan Molina is a fourth year communication major at Sonoma State.
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