(Seguin) – If you want to get in shape and stay in shape, you might as well do it in community. Today marks the start of the free Fitness in the Park event.

Fitness instructor Kelly Smith says she has partnered with the Seguin Parks and Recreation Department to offer free group fitness to the community. She says the event will take place weekly under the grand pavilion at Max Starcke Park East.

“It will be every Thursday starting today at 6 p.m. and then we will go until November 17, which is the Thursday before Thanksgiving. So every Thursday evening. This will be our fall schedule and format wise, the first part will be more Zumba type fitness. So there will be choreographed fitness moves in the dance, and then I’ll incorporate a bit of strength training into it as well,” Smith said.

By offering the free fitness class at the park, Smith hopes it will remove any barriers people might face when it comes to making time for exercise. Plus, she says it’s designed for all fitness levels.

“Everyone is welcome. I think everyone will be able to participate. I’ve been a fitness instructor for a long time, so I’ll be able to show different options. I’ll probably take some of those options myself and I’m sure there will be people who are new to fitness and it’s their first time tying their shoelaces and trying something or if it’s going to be something new in terms of the type of format of fitness that we do and then there will be people who used to go to my studio and they have a lot of experience or they’ve been in different fitness experiences over the years so we’re going to have a wide range of people but I will make sure everyone is in good hands.if anyone needs a break we have picnic benches there they can walk in place or sit down if they have them need,” Smith said.

Smith, who ran a similar program at the park years ago, says after the challenges of the past two years, she and the city felt the residents deserved this last push to get people moving.

“If anyone has ever been in my class before, they will tell you that everyone feels welcome and it’s a non-judgmental, super non-intimidating space where people come out and be themselves. Any movement is better than no movement,” Smith said.

The lesson will take place today at the park from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Smith encourages participants to wear comfortable clothes and tennis shoes. They are also encouraged to bring a bottle of water, a towel, and a yoga or fitness mat. Special door prizes, courtesy of the city of Seguin, will also be awarded during each class. Those wishing to stay up to date with the fitness group are asked to join the Seguin Community Fitness Classes Facebook group or contact the park office at 830-401-2480.