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Box Your Stress Away at Suffield Area's Hits and Kicks

By Marina I. Jokic

Hits and Kicks in Suffield, CT offers a surefire way to get in shape through cardio kickboxing and boxing classes. Taught by owner and head coach Donna Calabrese and guest boxing coach Pito Cordona, the classes are designed to accommodate people from all fitness levels, increase their stamina, and enhance their cardiovascular health. If you'd like to get in shape and also learn to defend yourself, Hits and Kicks is worth checking out.

Calabrese's interest in fitness was sparked in her younger days, but she didn't pursue it seriously until later in her life. Earning a black belt in Karate in 2001 empowered her to teach others to defend themselves and stay in shape.

But she also wanted to complement her knowledge with nutritional and fitness education in order to deliver a more comprehensive program to her students. Incorporating movement, technique, and nutrition was much more effective than just teaching fitness or self-defense alone.

Teachers at Hits and Kicks are well versed in their areas of expertise, and will work with each student individually to achieve optimum results. "Instructors will demonstrate correct form and execution of the movement and work with each individual to ensure proper form and technique are learned," Calabrese says. "Our classes are for all fitness levels- both cardio boxing and kickboxing are full body workouts," adds Calabrese. Participants can work at their own level and pace during class, and shouldn't be intimidated by the prospect of falling behind. Instructors even encourage certain exercise modifications for students while they are learning a particularly challenging move or technique.

Calabrese has studied American Freestyle Karate for over five years, which combines Judo, Jujitsu and Aikido techniques. She also won second place in the Windsor School of Self-Defense Tournament in 1999, holds a Thompson Fitness and Nutrition Certification, is a Boxing Fitness Institute Certified Boxing Fitness Trainer and is actively training with Connecticut Boxing Hall of Fame Inductee, Isreal "Pito" Cardona. In addition, Calabrese is certified to teach Piloxing, Insanity, and is an independent Beachbody Coach in fitness and nutrition.

The benefits of kickboxing and boxing are many, including reduction of cardiovascular disease and stroke, decrease in stress, improvement in body strength, and learning life-saving self-defense skills. For instance, interval training which is regularly employed in kickboxing, is a great way to build cardiovascular health and stamina. Training moves such as squats, pushups, burpees, planks, and jump rope boost strength while decreasing stress through the release of natural endorphins. "Self-defense skills will not be practical until you apply them to a target or heavy bag," points out Calabrese. Hits and Kicks' goal is to teach you proper form and technique to punch and kick effectively.

"Both cardio boxing and kickboxing workouts are challenging but fun, and by fun, we mean that by the time you're done, you're going to be satisfyingly exhausted and recharged at the same time, swimming in your own sweat," Calabrese promises. Kickboxing is a calorie-burning powerhouse of an exercise, and it's sure to push your cardiovascular limits and endurance. Learning authentic boxing combinations and useful self-defense techniques by incorporating feet, leg and knee strikes will give you a total body workout.

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About The Author

Marina Jokic holds a bachelor's degree from Connecticut College in Russian and East...

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