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Class is back in session for Farrell’s Down-to-Box adaptive kickboxing program

Farrell's is launching its third Down-to-Box adaptive kickboxing program at the end of this month and on Tuesday night hosted an orientation class to get new and returning members interested for their next 12 week session.

Chip Smith boxes during a "Down-to-Box" class on Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2022, at Farrell's eXtreme Bodyshaping in Rochester.
Traci Westcott / Post Bulletin
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ROCHESTER — The adaptive kickboxing community keeps on growing in Northwest Rochester as Farrell’s Xtreme Bodyshaping resumes its Down-to-Box program .

The kickboxing gym hosted its second orientation for its next Down-to-Box program Tuesday night. The next 12-week program begins on Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2022, and Farrell’s owner Lenore Schoenfelder is still looking to recruit with help from participants like Phoebe Towey.

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The adaptive kickboxing program allows individuals with varying disabilities the chance to work out in a program designed for their abilities.

Towey has participated in all three sessions so far dating back to September 2021, and for her, this program is all about “kicking butt” and the people she meets through the program.

“I am meeting people here, and I have brought a lot of friends here," Towey said. "I keep learning how to kick butt too every time.”


Not only is Towey a great recruiter for the program, but as one of the veteran participants of Down-to-Box she has become a part-time instructor for the newer participants to the program.

“Phoebe is like a mother hen trying to help everyone,” Schoenfelder said on Towey’s growth. “It’s been a great experience seeing how she has grown.”

Sydney Becker, a friend of Towey’s who works with her through Possibilities of Southern Minnesota, said the program matches Towey’s outgoing personality.

“Phoebe is very outgoing, truly one of the most kind-hearted people I've ever met and is friends with literally everyone she comes across. She’s a little bit of a trouble maker, so this is a great outlet for her,” said Becker on Towey’s time with Down-to-Box.

Towey is not alone in having a great outlet at Down-to-Box. The last 12-week session Farrell hosted saw up to 22 participants in the program, and according to Schoenfelder and fellow instructor Heather Renier, the program has been a fantastic outlet for the participants to let out emotions they have to keep bottled up in other settings.

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“There was one gentleman, Rodney, who was here tonight for another session, and when he first began his balance was not fully there,” said Renier. “And he has come so far as you saw tonight, he is so well engaged now and having an amazing time with everyone.”

For Renier, the program has helped her grow immensely as an instructor too. The opportunity to teach these individuals participating in the Down-to-Box program brings Renier immense joy.

“It's just fun to see what they look forward to. You're helping them achieve things and they get very excited when something goes well for them as they improve their skills," Reiner said. "As far as just growing, I think this has helped me think outside the box as you have to because I would instruct normal complexity or through some classes.”


In addition to the work at the gym, Schoenfelder likes to hand out weekly "homework" for the participants to help their bodies adjust to the kickboxing and build up their tolerance to the program.

“Some weeks I’ll give them a list asking them to eat a certain amount of vegetables for the next week or do certain types of more exercises before the next class, and even telling them to go home and instruct a friend or family member a piece of what they learned here,” said Schoenfelder.

Those interested in signing up for the program can reach out to Schoenfelder either via email at lenoreschoenfelder@extremebodyshaping.com or by calling 507-358-63624. Classes starting Tuesday, Sept. 27 run through Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2022, and sessions last an hour from 6:30-7:30 p.m.

In addition to the classes, Farrell’s is planning to host another Trunk or Treat event in October. The event will happen Friday, Oct. 14, 2022, and start at 6:30 p.m. in the parking lot of Farrell’s eXtreme Bodyshaping. Sam’s Club has donated $100 worth of candy to Farrell’s for the event which ran out last year due to more people than they expected showing up for the event.

Jenesis Schrom, 14, pratices a jab with the help of Coach Lenore Schoenfelder during a "Down-to-Box" class on Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2022, at Farrell's eXtreme Bodyshaping in Rochester.
Traci Westcott / Post Bulletin

Farrell's eXtreme Bodyshaping

4214 U.S. Highway 52 N, Rochester



Theodore Tollefson is a business reporter for the Post Bulletin. He is originally from Burnsville, Minn., and graduated from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls with a bachelor's degree in journalism in December 2020. Readers can reach Theodore at 507-281-7420 or ttollefson@postbulletin.com.
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