Skylar Jackson has worked at the Wills Valley Recreation Center for approximately eight years as a fitness instructor. Jackson teaches a group fitness class on Friday mornings at 8::00 a.m. The class he teaches includes a cardio workout, hand weights, core-strengthening, circuit style training and the use of resistance bands. Resistance bands are stretchable bands that are used for general fitness. All fitness instructors at the facility are certified and trained to teach each type of fitness class as needed.

“The members that take my class range in age from twenties to eighties,” said Jackson. “This class is for everyone, we modify what is done as needed for individuals.”

The weight room is also where Jackson can be commonly found training people on the proper use of free weights and weight machines. Free weights are any type of weight training equipment that does not limit the range of motion with which you can use it. These types of weights are useful for building strength, speed, flexibility, balance and muscle mass.

Jackson doesn’t exercise just because he should, he loves it. “I don’t plan my exercise routine around my day, I plan my day around my exercise routine,” said Jackson. This type of devotion and enthusiasm for exercise is just what some members need to stick with it. Jackson tells members, “The hardest part was getting her, you made it - so let’s get this done.”

With a family history of heart problems Jackson knows it is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle and encourages those around him to do the same no matter their family history. Like most athletes Jackson has had his share of injuries to contend with and understands the process anyone needs to follow to return to better health. “You have to alter your lifestyle to get through a health issue,” said Jackson. “The important thing is to never give up. You modify your exercise routine and build it back up slowly, but it can be done with patience and perseverance.”

Due to the current restrictions placed on all gyms at this time in the face of the COVID - 19 pandemic and the guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention the Wills Valley Recreation Center is currently closed to the public. The staff is diligently taking this time to deep clean the facility in anticipation for the reopening.

“We are doing more than just cleaning,” said Jackson. “We are also making a few needed repairs.”

Follow Spotlight on Business to find out about other local businesses that are open and the changes they have instituted in accordance with current CDC guidelines.

— Marla Ballard’s Spotlight on Business appears in the Times-Journal weekend edition.

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