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St. Pete Beach residents jump in the pool for Worldwide Aquathon Day

Posted at 7:22 AM, Nov 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-12 15:51:27-05

ST. PETE BEACH, Fla. — There’s a group of people in St. Pete Beach who are proving every day that any workout you can do on land you can also do in the water. On Saturday they’ll take their aquatic fitness to an international level as they participate in Worldwide Aquathon Day.

Throughout the week St. Pete Beach offers seven wet and wild aquatic fitness classes, led by instructors who make you laugh, then make you work.

“You get an awesome heart-thumping workout in a party atmosphere,” said Aqua Zumba instructor Mary Brown.

“I try to be funny so I can entertain but at the same time they are doing fitness,” said Aqua Fusion instructor Aneta Trainer.

Those in the pool following along to the exercises say it’s the best way to stay active.

“This isn’t an old lady class, this is like a boot camp,” said participant Janette Turby.

“This is not a wimpy exercise, our instructor really works us,” said participant Dena Michaelson.

On Saturday they’ll face their biggest challenge yet, the 9th annual Worldwide Aquathon Day.

“Its an aquatic fitness marathon, three hours of aquatic fitness,” said Ayako Ruckdeschel, St. Pete Beach Aquatic Supervisor.

The event, which originated in South Africa, will include more than 80 countries, all splashing around in unison.

“I'm so happy to be part of the world stage for the Aquathon,” said Sarah Dubbeld. “I think it means that a lot of people have caught on to the benefits of water exercise internationally and I’m delighted that St. Pete is participating,” said Michaelson.

The first class begins at 9 a.m. For more information, go to

“It's a personal challenge to many of these patrons and if they complete the three hours they get a certificate of achievement and so it’s very rewarding for them,” said Ruckdeschel.