Evanston instructor spins it his way
Classes include level one spin, 1000 calorie burner and The Gun Show, (shown here) where students use hand weights as part of the workout. | JACKIE PILOSSOPH~for Sun-Times Media
904 Sherman Ave.
Updated: April 15, 2013 6:17AM
EVANSTON — If you’re walking down Sherman Avenue on a Sunday morning, you can hear Jason Bressler shouting out cues and words of motivation to his class from inside his Evanston spin studio, Revolution Spin.
With his very high level of enthusiasm and energy that could cause anyone to jump on a bike and start peddling, Bressler has a unique style for teaching.
“Our philosophy here is that everyone is an athlete, and it’s our job to motivate them and make them believe that,” said Bressler, who opened Revolution Spin in 2011. “Everyone has the ability to push themselves to limits they never thought possible before, and it’s my job to help them achieve that.”
Bressler, who has worked in information technology for 20 years, took his first spinning class seven years ago and said he was “hooked” right away. However, it didn’t take more than a couple classes for him to realize he wanted to be the teacher.
“I felt like I could do a better job when it came to enthusiasm and entertainment during a class,” said Bressler, “Spin instructors need to be both motivators and entertainers, who push the class, but who also make sure everyone is having fun.”
Bressler holds a certification in personal training through the National Endurance and Strength Training Association, as well as a spinning certification through Mad Dogg Athletics. He said he taught himself how to teach spin.
“Shortly after I started spinning, I bought a spin bike and started creating my own version of spinning,” he said. “I carefully craft my playlists so that the perceived effort during a class is as minimal as it can possibly be.”
With 12 other instructors who teach at the studio, Revolution Spin offers several different spinning classes for men and women at all different fitness levels, ranging from the very beginner to the experienced athlete.
Classes include level one spin, 1,000 calorie burner, The Gun Show, where students use hand weights as part of the workout, and themed boot camp classes, which are high intensity interval classes that consist of 60 minutes of spin, followed by 30 minutes of intense weight lifting and core work. The themes have to do with the music Bressler plays, which includes songs from the ’80s and ’90s, Prince, Michael Jackson and Queen.
“There are so many levels of students in here,” said Bressler, who holds a B.A. in English. “We try to make it as non-intimidating as possible, with a goal of making you progress through the classes and realize you can do every single class.”
Erwin Araos is an instructor at Revolution Spin who teaches the 1,000 calorie burner class.
“We’re lowering and raising our heart rates, which forces the rest of our bodies to adjust,” he said. “That increases stamina and endurance, which strengthens the body.”
Araos said most people think spin classes only work the legs, but that spin is truly a full body workout, because it works core muscles as well.
“When I hire my instructors, I look for passion for spin, passion for instruction and passion for motivating,” said Bressler, “The same passion that I have.”
“Jason is the best at choreographing the movement to movement of a class,” said Pat Garcia of Evanston, who does the Sunday class regularly. “The class goes by so quickly and it’s an amazing workout.”
“This isn’t just a routine, it’s challenging and it keeps changing,” said Martha Rivera of Chicago.
There’s no membership fee at Revolution Spin. A single class is $20, but spinners can buy packages, where the cost goes down significantly. For example, 10 classes cost $145.
“I love the look on somebody’s face when they finish a 60-minute class and have given every ounce of energy,” said Bressler, “That look of euphoria is really great to see.”