One thing I love about our hometown Los Angeles Derby Dolls (LADD) is their DIY attitude and unique approach to athleticism, which is punctuated by the fact that the Dolls are now hosting Punk Rope every Wednesday, led by Janis Choplin, captain of the Fight Crew.
To clarify, the Dolls did not invent “Punk Rope,” it was originally designed by Tim Haft, who certifies trainers like LADD’s Janis Choplin to teach the class. “Choppy” also coaches a Punk Rope class in Silver Lake on Tuesdays. This week’s Tuesday Punk Rope class was a trip back in time to the 1960’s and Wednesday’s class will be a tribute to the Buzzcocks.
Check out an LA Metblogs EXCLUSIVE interview with Choppy about the class:
MB: What exactly is Punk Rope?
JC: It’s a fun blend of recess and boot camp, combining creative calisthenics, games, group activities and rope jumping.
MB: Who is the perfect candidate to take a Punk Rope class?
JC: People who like to have fun and are interested in improving their physical fitness. People who love music. The class is upbeat and playful.
MB: LA Derby Dolls are tough, how athletic do you need to be to Punk Rope?
JC: The class is multi-level. I offer options for beginner, intermediate and advanced. It is “choose your own adventure” when it comes to the level of intensity. We have a range of participants from the non-athletic to the Derby Dolls that attend the class.
MB: Besides rope jumping, what else happens in the class?
JC: In a typical class, there are 15 intervals. We like to mix things up to keep you on your toes! You’ll certainly get some core and upper body work as well as a relaxing cool down. We promise to give you a thorough, yet entertaining workout.
MB: What kind of music will we be working out to?
JC: Punk, ska, metal, classic rock, indie rock, merengue, samba, country, pyschobilly, rockabilly, zydeco, hip hop, blues, techno, jazz and the list continues to grow. There is a different theme play list every week.
MB: What other kinds of community classes like this are offered at the Doll Factory?
JC: Currently Punk Rope is the only one. Unless you consider our Junior Roller Derby program a community class. We are on the lookout for other instructors who want to lead classes.
MB: Any other advice or suggestions for people thinking about taking Punk Rope?
JC: A good sense of humor always helps, remember everyone trips on their rope and it is okay. I recommended trying two classes – the first one can be a little challenging if you haven’t jumped rope since you were a kid. By the second class, participants get into the swing of things.
MB: When did the Derby Dolls start offering Punk Rope at the Doll House?
JC: In late August of 2008.
MB: How did you come up with the idea for the class?
JC: I was certified by the class creator Tim Haft. You can get information on his organization at punkrope.com.
This is all you need to know to get your Punk Rope on:
Tuesdays, 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM at The Klub Gymnastics
Wednesdays, 6:15 PM – 7:15 PM at The Doll Factory
Tuesdays • The Klub Gymnastics • 1110 Bates Ave • Los Angeles, CA
Wednesdays • The Doll Factory • 1910 W Temple St • Los Angeles, CA
(park in the lot off Westlake) derbydolls.com/la/fitness
Your coach, Shannon Kobylka (a.k.a Janis Choplin), will use her more than 15 years of experience as a gymnastics coach to punish your muscles with love. Visit Shannon online at myspace.com/pulpfitness.
$10 per class (your first class is free!)
What Do I Need Bring To Class?
All you need to bring is water and a towel or mat. Wear comfortable clothing and athletic shoes. Jump ropes are available at both locations. The class is a combination of rope jumping, agility and strength training.
Thanks to non-traditional fitness classes like Punk Rope, group exercise no longer has to include an overpriced gym membership, douche bag meatheads and oontz oontz house music blasting from every speaker. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. I take that back. There is so much wrong with that.
For more information, visit: http://www.derbydolls.com/la/fitness/.