Our Genie is eager to grant the wishes of all Members who want to feel stronger and healthier with energizing sessions in the water.
She says, “There are so many opportunities for us with this long-awaited fabulous new pool. We will have aqua bikes, treadmills, trampolines and underwater bar bells like the ones being used at Marine training bases across the country. Our classes range from challenging Aqua Cardio Blast to gentle Silver Splash. We have Pilates classes and Wet Barre in the pool, while serious swimmers can enjoy swimming laps with no interruptions. We hope everyone will pick up a schedule of all activities at the Fitness Center, make some choices, and join us in the water. Many of your favorite trainers on land will be coaching in the pool.”
Genie fell in love with Ocean Reef 25 years ago when she introduced her Miami Company, Aqua Fit & Firm, to the Club and presented some ideas to enhance the recreation program. There were no water classes or swim lessons at Buccaneer Island and space for exercise was limited to the Marina Fitness Center and private pools. ORC management agreed to three weekly classes in the pool, swim lessons, and exercise at The Point, outdoors and in the enclosure. For years, Genie had to store and retrieve all equipment – mats, noodles, float belts, and weights for both land and water. She carried the load from place to place while she welcomed growing numbers of enthusiastic Members and their guests to her popular sessions. Eventually she used a rolling cart.
Through the years, she’s taught dozens of babies, children and adults to swim. Genie says, “The perfect age to introduce a child to swimming can be as young as a year to 18 months. There’s a natural instinct to start kicking. It’s a great time to strengthen developing muscles and give the little ones comfort and confidence in the pool. Therapy classes in the water can be an extension of land physical therapy for someone recovering from surgery, illness, or preparing for a medical procedure. The buoyancy of water heals and restores.”
Genie holds fast to memories of growing up athletic, always loving the water, and being in pools wherever the family lived. She remembers being fascinated with synchronized swimming and staging water shows in her hometown of Hauma, Louisiana. In college she majored in Speech and Hearing therapy, but after graduation and working as an educator, she knew that her professional life had to include educating people about swimming, its benefits and pleasures. After marriage and coming to live in Florida, she and her husband built a pool where she taught classes. She says, “It adds up. I have 30 years of certification as coach for synchronized swim, aquatic exercise and water therapy.”
Looking ahead to next season Genie predicts there will be a surge of Members coming to the pool. It will be a favorite place to be, and an integral part of Reef fitness.