The fitness class Stroller Strides BCS offers mothers the chance to keep up with their physical health with their babies in tow.
“It’s something I wouldn’t have actually picked out for myself because it sounds like it’s not intense enough,” said franchise owner Ellen Wilcox. “It sounds like moms walking in the park. That’s not what we do. I was really impressed with the level of the workout and how much they really expect from you. A lot of people think physically as a mom you’re not capable of very much. But you are.”
Wilcox said she launched the organization in April to help bring mothers together to network and support one another while staying fit.
“Moms are so busy just taking care of their babies and their kids and their families and they really need a place where they can take care of their own needs but take care of their kids’ needs at the same time,” she said.
Mothers can start the program six weeks post-natal as long as they’ve been cleared by a doctor and children can come “up until they don’t fit in the stroller any more,” she said.
Women can also participate while pregnant, Wilcox said, pointing to her belly and noting she is due to have her second child on Oct. 18.
She said she has been taught various modifications for women in different stages of motherhood to help gear the classes to individual participants. Stroller Strides meets at Wolf Pen Creek Park at 9:30 a.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and at 9:30 a.m. at Tanglewood Park on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Becca Grahan said she won 10 free Stroller Strides classes in a raffle so she brought her 13-month-old son, Asher. She said she loves the transition between cardio and strength training in the classes. It took Asher a few times to get used to sitting in the stroller for an hour at a time, but now he does it with ease, she said.
“It’s a workout I wouldn’t do on my own. I love running on my own and I love doing workout videos. But it’s just something I wouldn’t be able to push myself and motivate myself to do.”
Wilcox said she moved to the area about a year ago. She’d been participating with her almost 2-year-old son Oliver in the Stroller Strides franchise in Austin and missed having that connection here.
“I wanted the networking group for myself. There’s nothing like this in College Station and moms really need the support group. The three things that are proven to help with postpartum depression is fitness, diet and nutrition and socialization. And they’re just not getting that socialization when they’re home with the baby.”
The workouts include cardio bursts, strength training, stairs, sprints, bear crawls and much more, she said. If the children lose interest or start to get upset, the class will break into kid-friendly songs. “We have a lot of fun and it’s just a great place where moms can meet other moms that are in the same stage of life they are. We can work out and network and all support each other,” Wilcox said.
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