Young moms find exercise a good fit at Stuart Field

At a recent class in Amissville, Rappfit participants — including one who just had to be there with mom on her exercise mat — get their workout time in.Julia Fair | Rappahannock News
At a recent class in Amissville, Rappfit participants — including one who just had to be there with mom on her exercise mat — get their workout time in.

It started with two moms, a boombox and an idea.

What started as a joke between Lindsey Wangsgard, 36, and Donna Comer, 44 — the joke being that if no one else showed up, it would be just two moms and a boombox — has evolved into a group fitness class frequented by about 15 other moms and community members.

While the young sons and daughters of the class participants make their way around the dirt-covered bases at Stuart Field in Amissville, Wangsgard and Comer lead the classes inside a nearby shelter, calling their group Rappfit.

“We saw what we felt like was a basic need in the county,” Comer said.

She added that there’s a variety of specialized group fitness classes available in the county, but there wasn’t a general group fitness option. When the group first started meeting, they used the local elementary school, but had to take a break from holding classes due to scheduling conflicts with the space, Comer said.

“A participant who had been taking the classes at the school contacted us and said, ‘Let’s do it again,’ ” Comer said.

That conversation led them to their new location — rent free — at the baseball field’s Ruritan Community Building, where the fitness participants can be found every Monday and Wednesday at 6:30 p.m.

“We try to teach a basic fitness class, we don’t want people to feel like they have to come with a lot of equipment,” Wangsgard said. “We want you to feel like you can come even if you don’t have three dollars in your pocket.”

There is a suggested donation of $3 in exchange for participating in the class, Comer added. The donations then go back to the Culpeper Rappahannock Baseball League’s community outreach program.

The class meets every Monday and Wednesday at the Ruritan Community Building in Amissville.Julia Fair | Rappahannock News
The class meets every Monday and Wednesday at the Ruritan Community Building in Amissville.

In the program’s year and a half of operation, it’s raised about $3,000, Wangsgard said,

Christine Allen, vice president of the league, who also participates in the Rappfit classes, helps oversee the donation funds.

“Donna and Lindsey do wonders providing their services here for us so we’ve decided to, in turn, pay it forward and use it as our community outreach,” Allen said.

Allen added that the class is their own “little team of moms,” encouraging and supporting each other throughout the workout.

“We just want to live a healthy lifestyle,” she said.

The class activities vary week by week, Wangsgard said, recounting past class activities that have focused on cardio, strength, core exercises and back exercises.

One’s personal fitness level shouldn’t deter anyone from joining the class sessions, she added.

“We modify for people who might not be jumping as high as others,” Wangsgard said.

In the future, Wangsgard said they hope to raise enough money to buy weights for the group, as well as foam mats to lay across the concrete flooring.

“We want the program to better things for everyone,” she said.

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