McLane high students staying fit with school workout program

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- For many of us, exercising can be a challenge during the winter months, but some local teenagers are spending their break exercising by choice.

The rhythm is contagious inside McLane High School's gym, as rows of students move and grove to Zumba. "I feel great even before she starts the dance," student Marlene Salmeron said. "I'm already popping, locking. I'm already dancing."

Salmeron is one of the nearly 100 people enrolled in McLane's Winter Break Physical Education class. It started four years ago to help kids catch up on credits but has become an outlet for them.

Athletic Director Javan Childs runs the free program and says every year it's grown. "They just want something to do," Childs said. "Three weeks is a pretty lengthy break for anyone so after a couple of day of sitting at home and then getting out of chores, why not come out when you can be with your friends get some exercise and having a good time."

The program runs for almost five hours with different activities, and students say they're already feeling a difference. "I've been getting stronger and getting more muscle up here," said student Karina Ramirez.

While many teenagers sleep in and watch TV all day, these students say the class has become a highlight of their day. "This just seems more fun," Ramirez said. "You get to talk to meet more people, so it's just fun."

Students also have a chance to do an ice breaker, activities where they learn to trust and meet new people. Participants say they're feeling healthier and happier. "I feel a lot more energetic," Anthony Barnhart said. "I used to be lethargic, I feel so much energy now. I feel a lot better."

Although the class only lasts three weeks, many of these students say they'll be walking away with exercise habits and new friends when they return to school.
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