As the calendar flips into February, we’re not just celebrating Valentine’s Day but also American Heart Month. This month is a timely reminder of the crucial role exercise plays in heart health. From strengthening the heart muscle to reducing the risk of heart disease, the importance of regular physical activity cannot be overstated. Exercising helps lower blood pressure, enhances circulation, and increases good cholesterol levels. Get ready to join us at the J throughout the month as we keep our hearts pumping with energizing and heart-friendly workouts. Here are some of the top exercise classes for heart health in St. Louis!


Zumba is a dynamic and exhilarating fitness program that combines Latin and international music with dance moves. It’s more of a fun party than a workout, which makes exercising enjoyable and keeps participants coming back for more.

When it comes to heart health, Zumba shines by providing a high-energy cardiovascular workout that gets your heart pumping, improving circulation, and increasing endurance. This aerobic activity can help lower your risk of heart disease, reduce blood pressure, and boost good cholesterol levels. 

In honor of Heart Health Day on February 14, the J will be hosting special Zumba classes, giving you the perfect opportunity to shake up your routine and boost your heart health in an exciting way! The High-Low Zumba Master class (combined) the J will be hosting on February 14 is a great opportunity to come and “Dance Your Heart Out” with friends and family as the class is open to both members and the general public. Wearing red is encouraged.


Pilates is a fun option for heart health as it combines strength training with a cardiovascular workout. This moderate-paced group exercise class emphasizes controlled movements and deep breathing, which can support healthy blood circulation and blood pressure. As an added bonus, Pilates exercises are designed to strengthen the core, improving posture and helping to blast fat.

Pilates exercise classes are a great idea because they provide a safe and encouraging space where you can learn proper technique and form, reducing the risk of injury. Additionally, these classes often bring about a sense of camaraderie among fellow class members, making the workout more enjoyable and motivating.


Swimming is a fantastic exercise for heart health because it provides a full-body workout that strengthens the heart muscle and your breathing. This form of exercise is also low-impact, meaning it’s gentle on the joints. 

The water’s buoyancy supports the body’s weight, reducing stress on the joints while still providing resistance for muscle strengthening. This feature makes swimming an ideal choice for those with joint pain or arthritis.

Swimming exercise classes can be particularly beneficial as they provide structured workouts targeting different aspects of fitness. Plus, the social aspect of these classes can make the experience more enjoyable, encouraging regular participation and consistent heart-healthy exercise

Hi-Lo Aerobics

As the name implies, Hi-Lo Aerobics combines high and low impact movements for an engaging workout. The high-impact exercises are designed to get your heart rate up quickly and effectively, offering a robust cardiovascular workout, while the low-impact movements provide a sustained, lower cardio load over a longer duration. This makes it suitable for beginners or those with injury concerns. 

The blend of high and low impact exercise is excellent for heart health, as it helps burn fat and promotes endurance. To celebrate Heart Health Day on February 14, the J will be hosting special Hi-Lo classes. Joining these sessions will be a fantastic opportunity to boost your heart health while enjoying a fun and energetic workout!

The High-Low Zumba Master class (combined) the J will be hosting on February 14 is a great opportunity to come and “Dance Your Heart Out” with friends and family as the class is open to both members and the general public. Wearing red is encouraged.


Clear your mind and support a healthy heart. Despite its less intense nature than some of these other exercise forms, practicing yoga is terrific for maintaining your heart health.

Yoga promotes cardiovascular health by reducing stress levels, a known contributing factor to heart disease. The deep, mindful breathing and meditative aspects of yoga can lower blood pressure and heart rate, fostering a sense of calm and well-being. Not to mention, yoga improves flexibility and balance, which can be beneficial for overall health. 

Joining yoga classes for heart health is a great opportunity to enter a supportive environment where you can learn proper poses. Plus, the communal aspect can make the practice more enjoyable and sustainable. 


High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) classes at the J is incredibly beneficial for heart health. The intense, short bursts of exercise followed by brief recovery periods in a HIIT workout can significantly raise your heart rate, which strengthens the heart muscle and improves cardiovascular endurance. 

Examples of HIIT exercises include sprinting, jumping jacks, burpees, or squat jumps, all performed at maximum effort for short intervals, typically 20-30 seconds, followed by a brief rest period.

This form of training can also help with blood pressure regulation and cholesterol management. HIIT classes are a fantastic idea because they provide a structured, time-efficient workout in a group setting, offering motivation and camaraderie. 


Step your way to a healthier heart. This form of exercise involves repeated stepping up and down on a platform, which raises the heart rate and provides a great cardiovascular workout. Stepping can help strengthen the heart muscle, improve circulation, and increase lung capacity. 

Taking step classes at the J promises to be a high-energy experience in a fun and inclusive environment. It’s hard not to let loose, as these classes usually incorporate music and choreography. Step classes are engaging and help participants stay committed to their fitness journey.


Don’t feel like stepping? Sit down for a spin in a cycling class. Cycling raises your heart rate for prolonged periods, which is essential for conditioning. Regular cycling can also aid in managing blood pressure and cholesterol levels, both crucial for maintaining heart health. 

Stay on track with Cycle 40/20 classes at the J. Our Cycle 40/20 class combines 40 minutes of high-energy, upbeat cycling with 20 minutes of core stabilization exercises, strength training, stretching, and balancing movements. 

This blend not only promotes heart health but also fosters overall body fitness and balance. It’s also ideal for those looking for an intense workout in a shorter duration of time. 

Boost Heart Health in St. Louis at the J

As we journey through February, we invite you to join us at the J for an exciting and heart-healthy workout experience. Whether it’s step classes, HIIT, or Cycle 40/20, there’s something for everyone. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to boost your heart health and overall fitness in a supportive, energetic environment. Come work out with us at the J, and make February a month of heart-healthy fun!