Dual Depth Cardio Core Circuit

Wednesday, September 29 2021

Get out your pool noodle, choose your depth and prepare to burn calories and strengthen your midsection in Cardio Core Circuit.  This 45-minute pool workout, featuring Katy Coffey, rotates between blocks of cardio movements and core exercises and can be performed in either deep or shallow water.

The inspiration for this dual depth circuit class was born out of necessity during the pandemic when Katy’s only option was to offer a class in a pool that was space and equipment challenged. “The shallow end of the pool had limited usability and half of my students were afraid of deep water,” says Katy.  Furthermore, her students were accustomed to strength classes with equipment and due to COVID restrictions the only equipment allowed was noodles.  "I was inspired by a land workout that I had taken, which featured a lot of grounded core work and planking that I thought would work in both deep and shallow water.”  Katy adapted some of the core ideas form the land class and blended them with segments of cardio movements.  The end result was a successful format that became highly popular with Katy’s class participants.
Watch Katy talk more about Cardio Core Circuit.

Cardio Segments
The cardio segments in this workout are simple to teach and easy to follow because they only include two moves which are repeated three times.  The moves can be taught for whatever length of time suits your population and workout goals.  In this workout, the cardio moves are taught for 30 seconds each, with rest periods offered between each set.   According to Katy, the focus in this pool workout is more on steady-state training and endurance and less on HIIT.  “We still build adequate rest periods within the structure, but the moves are not really intended to max out your cardio threshold.”

Core Segments
The core segments feature four moves that are repeated twice.  Within each core circuit there is a "repeater" move that is intended to amp the challenge during the core training. “The other two moves, though still challenging in nature, serve as a slight recovery within the core sets,” says Katy. At the end of each circuit, get ready for a “Katy Killer Cardio Minute” that is designed to provide recovery from core work, while working hard to achieve the cardio goal. 

Flotation Belt & Noodle
The core segments can be performed without a noodle in the deep end, since the flotation belt that is required in deep water will provide the necessary buoyant support.  However, you will probably want to use the noodle in the planking moves, such as the mountain climber, as these moves are better supported with the noodle under your shoulders.  The noodle is required in shallow water for all core exercises in lieu of not having the additional buoyant support of a flotation belt. 

Music used in Video
The music used in this video is from Power Music's Virtual Music category.  Seniors 5 is 128 bpm and can be downloaded for $14.95.

Working in aquatics since 2002, Katy has held over 20 industry certifications and spent several years as the senior aquatic director for multiple YMCAs in Massachusetts.   Most recently, she became a training specialist with the Aquatic Exercise Association (AEA) and a master trainer for S’WET Fitness.  Katy recently filmed her first video for Fitmotivation Inc. Be sure to check out AquaFIIT, which features her signature strength training style class.  Stay tuned for two more videos from Katy posting this fall. 


Author: Mark Grevelding is the founder of Fitmotivation. He is also a training specialist and consultant with the Aquatic Exercise Association’s (AEA). Mark has been active in the fitness industry for 22 years as a group fitness instructor, personal trainer, international presenter and a continuing education provider for AEA, AFAA & ACE.