Fitness junkies will testify that the right playlist can distract you from the burn that invades your muscles or the fatigue that threatens to undo your final set. That's why we're helping you upgrade your workout playlists with favorite picks from Philadelphia's top fitness instructors.
This week, Philly Dance Fitness instructor Timaree Schmit shares her tips for crafting playlists that her clients love to dance to.
"Playlists are a mixture of lesson plan, script and cheerleader in my use of them," Schmit said. "Obviously there's the science of beats per minute, heart rate, and exercise — but there's also the experience. I want it to feel like an epic party."
Schmit leads Philly Dance Fitness' Dance Party Boot Camp and Pilates classes and also team-teaches Frisky Friday striptease classes with owner Deborah Hirsch.
"The energy needs to pop from the beginning and be sustained, with waxes and wanes to keep students motivated for the whole class," Schmit said. "No matter how hard I push them, if they like the music, they'll feel able to do more."
Schmit, who crafts new playlists monthly, aims for a nice mixture of brand new tracks to keep clients on their toes and throwback tracks for a fun nostalgic twist.
"Overplayed radio songs are mentally exhausting," Schmit said. "The moment someone hears "Timber" play, they're going to think, 'UGH I don't want to dance to this.'"
That's why Schmit strongly suggests instructors get to their audience so there's a track on every playlist for you to enjoy. "Age range and other demographics make a big difference in what is nostalgic and what is whack," Schmit said.
Here are the 13 songs currently pumping at Schmit's Dance Party Boot Camp:
"Alone Together" by Fall Out Boy
"El Tigeraso" by Maluca
"You're in Love" by Betty Who
"I Do Not Hook Up" by Kelly Clarkson
"Glass Danse" by The Faint
"One Thing" by One Direction
"Losing Sleep" by John Newman
"Right Here (Departed)" by Brandy
"Put the Gun Down" by ZZ Ward
"Gringo" by Banda Uó
"Waiting Game" by Banks
*Follow the link to download these mixes on for free.