Group Fitness Class

Most fitness classes incorporate some kind of music. But not too many use live music to get people moving. Charlie Sarti, owner of 3rd Element in West Lawn, decided to invited a live band to perform during one of his group fitness classes.

“The name of the band was Blue Hippopotamus,” he said of the alternative rock band from Philadelphia. “They were working out while the band was jamming.”

Sarti, 31, said the response from class participants sparked an idea. “The people went nuts,” he said. “That’s really where it started. I thought a live band or DJ would be off the hook.” Sarti said he decided to offer live music on a regular basis, then made a connection that enabled him to bring his vision to life. “At my best friend’s wedding, that’s where I met Triple T,” said Sarti, referring to Matt Krause, also known as DJ Triple T, who was the DJ at the wedding about a year ago. Sarti, who said he’s always loved music, found that Triple T’s music kept him out on the dance floor. “He has really great energy,” said Sarti, who introduced himself to Krause that evening. “I asked him if he would ever be interested in DJ’ing a fitness class,” Sarti said.

Triple T said he was, and two weeks later he DJ’d his first class at 3rd Element. Krause, 37, has been a DJ for approximately 18 years. His normal gigs include weddings, Sweet 16s, charity events and corporate events, but he saw the DJ/fitness combination to be a unique opportunity. “I like it because I’m helping people to better themselves,” he said. “Whether they are getting ready for a wedding (or) weight loss, everyone is there for a different reason, but they are all there to improve themselves.” Sarti, who enjoys taking center stage at his classes when he instructs, said he can do it easily thanks to being an entertainer at heart. “I freestyle each class,” he said. “I’m not thinking about it. I go with the energy of the class.” He described how Triple T takes the same approach.

“What’s so good about Matt is he has no playlist,” Sarti said. “He’ll feed off of the energy and go off of my energy (in selecting music).” Krause agreed with Sarti. “I can tell by Charlie’s energy, and when he’s doing a certain thing next, I find a song that fits it,” he said, describing how he customizes songs with the appropriate BPM (beats per minute) based on what is going on in a class at a given time.

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