Jumping rope doesn’t immediately signal hardcore workout to me. It reminds me of being in the schoolyard at about the age of eight, red-faced and laughing as my friends and I tried to master “crazy” moves. So I was excited to try the new jump rope fitness studio in downtown St. Catharines. Anything that makes a workout more fun gets a big thumbs-up from me!
On my first visit to JumpHaus I was greeted by Founder, Divy Thasarathan, who moved to St. Catharines from Toronto in late 2017 with the purpose of opening JumpHaus. Divy is a former marketing executive who was also teaching jump rope fitness classes in Toronto. He says his background in track and field, especially the jumping events, led to his passion for fitness. He basically loves to jump!
After much research Divy realized that, while jump rope fitness classes have been growing in popularity, he couldn’t find a fitness studio dedicated to it. That’s when he decided to quit his job and open what he believes is the world’s first jump rope fitness studio right here in the Niagara Region.
I was curious to know why jump rope fitness is growing in popularity. The hard fitness facts are that it refines coordination, strengthens your bones (seriously, check it out here), improves heart health, boosts your stamina, and, yes, tones your bod as well.
Divy says he aims to break through all the “body image” noise associated with working out and focus on the healthy aspects. He hopes he can encourage people to simply get out and move every day for their own health – both physical and mental.
After all the wonderful food and drink I am sampling in the name of writing St Catharines Street articles, and the time spent sitting in front of the computer, I definitely needed to jump. It had been too long.
Lucky for me, Divy’s workouts at JumpHaus are designed for beginners and experts alike, as the other person who joined us for our workout was an actual competitive jump roper. Nonetheless, I was made to feel very comfortable throughout the class.
Before we started, Divy took us through everything we would be doing during the 45-minute session, including the warm-up and stretch. This is just the right amount of time to grab a workout during lunch hour.
There is a range of class styles to attend at JumpHaus. On this particular day I tried the Jump Beast class which involves a combination of jump rope intervals and strength exercises. During the warm-up, I clumsily figured out how to jump a rope again after not picking one up for 25 years. We were encouraged to take everything at our own pace (thankfully!), but also keep at it for the entire workout. The coordination did get easier and the pumping Latin beats coming out of the speakers helped to get me off the ground.
There was some fancy footwork with the rope that was fun for me to try and fail (just like schoolyard days of yore), but Divy also gave us options to drop back to an easier level, which I was not too proud to take.
I left the JumpHaus with a smile on my face, feeling inspired by Divy’s enthusiasm for fitness and the good workout endorphins running through my body. Could I walk the next day? Well, that’s a sadder story. I will just have to head to JumpHaus more often so my muscles can handle it.
Location 62 St Paul St, St. Catharines, ON L2R 3M2