Students spin to early class

EXERCISE “Wake Up & Cycle” classes start at 6:30 a.m. on Tuesday and Thursdays with full attendance.

In a dark room with pounding music and blacklights, students vigorously pedal away on stationary bikes while most of campus is still asleep.

“Wake Up & Cycle” is a group exercise cycling class held Tuesday and Thursday mornings from 6:30 to 7:15 a.m. at the Wellness Center.

Group exercise instructor, sophomore Mikelle Fetsch said he enjoys teaching Wake Up & Cycle in the mornings.

“I’m really tired in the morning, and I’m like, ‘Oh this sucks,’” Fetsch said. “(But) when you get done and have all sorts of energy, you don’t need coffee.”

The class’s growing popularity has many students up early.

“These past few weeks have been crazy busy,” Fetsch said. “This cycling class starts at 6:30, and the past few weeks, its been full at 6:07.”

The cycling room only has 20 bikes available on a first-come-firstserve basis.
“We hope to extend our studio space one day in the future,” said Laura Eagen, group exercises and personal trainer manager.

According to the Wellness Center website, Wake Up & Cycle is an Intensity Level I class. These classes are introductory and energizers for participants. Fetsch’s class routine entails warmups, hills, resistance, sprints and intervals.

“High intensity and high energy — you’ll sweat,” Fetsch said. “There’s a lot of fast-paced music, and I try to stay peppy and loud. Energy carries over to other people.”

While many may find group exercising intimidating, Eagen reassures students it’s not.
“Nobody’s watching you, (but) it does help drive you,” Eagen said. “We try to create a teamwork atmosphere so everyone feels comfortable.”

Fetsch sees group exercise as a great way to hang out and socialize with others.

“It’s fun with friends … and it’s not as intimidating as the weight room floor,” Fetsch said.

UND puts an emphasis on health and wellness with programs such as Guiding Stars, the Seven Dimensions of Wellness, and Eagen sees the positive response.

“Too often in our society, we’ve looked at exercise as a punishment. So we try to keep all of our classes energetic and fun as possible,” Eagan said. “Last semester, 12,000 students came through the door to participate in group exercises.”

There are also four other varying intensity cycling class held at the Wellness Center: Beginners Cycling, Power Cycling, CycleFit and Revolution.

Fetsch hopes to continue seeing a broad range of students participate in all categories.

“Anyone can do it,” she said “I’d like everyone to try it.”

Eagen wants students to know that even if cycling isn’t for them, the Wellness Center offers 40 free classes every week.

Paula Kaledzi is a staff writer for The Dakota Student. She can be reached at