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Tuesday, November 20 , 2018, 10:57 am | Fair 68º


IM=X Pilates Studio Finds Good Fit with New Series of Mommy-and-Me and Youth Programs

Little ones get in on the action with 'play date' classes; teen workouts and high-school sports conditioning are also offered at the Santa Barbara facility

IM=X Pilates Studio in Santa Barbara is offering a new “Pilates Play Date” class for parents and their babies as part of its recently launched youth program.
IM=X Pilates Studio in Santa Barbara is offering a new “Pilates Play Date” class for parents and their babies as part of its recently launched youth program. (IM=X Pilates Studio photo)

As a new mom looking to drop the baby weight, Chanda Fetter searched Santa Barbara for a fitness program to work her body as well as her infant daughter’s spirits.

Seeing none, the longtime local fitness instructor and owner of IM=X Pilates Studio decided to start her own and this year launched a series of youth fitness programs.

“Pilates Play Date” is a sort of mommy-and-me workout for parents and children ranging in age from six weeks to nine months, and it’s growing by the session.

Instead of trying to find a babysitter, moms and dads can bring the little ones along to help parents strengthen head and neck control, back strength and motor control.

Fetter gets a great workout lifting or wearing 6-month-old Ruby in a carrier on her chest, and — best of all — both of them get to socialize.

“I’ve had so many parents come to me over the years,” she said. “It’s really more for them. The Pilates Play Date has been a great success.”

In addition to a baby-focused series, IM=X Pilates at 3554 State St. is working to create a niche with a pre-teen pilates class for kids ages 6 to 12 and a pilates for young athletes series for those involved in high school sports between ages 13 to 18.

Pilates and yoga are gaining in popularity, so it’s no wonder the craze has spread from the adult demographic to youth.

Some local trainers are looking to jump on that exercise train.

IMX Pilates
IM=X Pilates Studio owner Chanda Fetter started the mommy-and-me type class after she had her first child, Ruby, who gets to participate in her mom's new offering. (IM=X Pilates Studio photo)

Down State Street from IM=X Pilates, the My Gym Children’s Fitness Center will begin offering a yoga class for kids, moms and babies this fall, along with a new dance class.

My Gym focuses primarily on the physical, cognitive and emotional health of children six weeks to 10 years old, employing non-competitive gymnastics, yoga, dance and more, according to local owner Jennifer Caesar.

Other places like the Santa Barbara Family YMCA offer zumba, yoga and other classes to young members 12 to 18 years old. Manager Mike Lopez said youth sports are typically pretty popular, but the YMCA has offered mommy-and-me classes before.

New moms can attend SB Stroller Boot Camp to get their fitness on at classes that are also geared more toward parents.

Fetter said IM=X Pilates youth programs differ because of her equipment, which allows baby-clad parents to use a Pilates Mat, Barre, TRX and Reformer modalities.

Parents can pay $10 per class or pay for a block of classes, said Fetter, who opened the local IM=X Pilates in 2007.

Her pre-teen classes include discussion and wellness education and an emphasis on cross training and blending pilates and yoga.

“There isn’t the attention being put on those kids in understanding wellness,” said Fetter, a former ballet dancer who herself struggled with body image issues.

She said IM=X Pilates is just looking to create an affordable option for parents because she realizes the challenges of adults and kids trying to work out on their own.

Noozhawk staff writer Gina Potthoff can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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