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Zumba Studio Combines Business with Fitness

Published:Thursday | March 17, 2016 | 8:26 AMTamara Bailey
The all-female group during a Zumba step session.
Stanley (right) takes a class through the routine.
Students and instructor Tonishia Stanley (third left) pose after a workout.

What started out as a fitness junkie's need to introduce new and effective ways of working out while having fun, has now morphed into a viable business venture to promote health and wellness.

The Ishia Zumba studio located at Shop 11 18B Ward Avenue Mandeville is the brainchild of Tonishia Stanley who initially brought her services as a zumba instructor to various gyms in Mandeville and Kingston but is now seeking to solidify her mark in her hometown.

After completing her certification courses in zumba, piloxing, pole fitness among other specialities in Florida, Stanley officially began instructing in 2013 then moved on to occupying physical spaces soon after.

"I used to go to a regular aerobics class and after awhile it got boring and I thought that if I felt this way others must be feeling like this as well, so I decide to try something different...I was away on vacation when I saw an opportunity to be trained and I seized... I am a natural dancer so it was easy for me."

With many ignorant about what zumba was, Stanley admits that things took a slow start initially before being well received by her now clients.

"I started out with five persons at first and then word got around and it has blown up into this big thing...I currently have more than 30 persons who come here daily for their classes. To sustain this business, I plan to keep it fun-filled and different. My students must never be bored, we have about 12 different routines and there are different genres of music though mostly Latin"

Not only is it an enjoyable routine, it is extremely effective, said Theresa Lawrence who has lost 40 pounds as a result of the classes.

"I have been to numerous gyms; I have even tried walking in the mornings but I found it to be boring and time-consuming and of course I wasn't seeing any results. I found this studio in the summer last year and there I experienced a total fun filled workout just by dancing with empowering women."

She added, "I ended up losing 40 pounds and I can honestly say zumba is a good way to get in shape, relieve stress and have fun"

Like Lawrence, foundation member Juliet Dennis has found the class extremely effective and worthwhile.

"I have been going to gyms for years but this is the most enjoyable and rewarding... I would recommend it to anybody."

In addition to creating awareness about this fitness form the female only studio offers zumba step, hip- hop, step aerobics, abdominals, sculpting toning, dancehall, piloxing (mixture of dance, boxing and pilates), pole fitness, zumba tone and zumba for children.

Classes are held in the evenings - Monday to Thursday 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Pole fitness is on Thursday and Friday evenings... the cost is $4000 monthly or $ 500 per class.

Stanley added, "Upon signing, I give clients written information explaining what zumba is about, I keep the moves pretty simple, though a few may be complicated; the moves are repetitive and so it's easy to learn."

For more information about the Ishia Zumba studio call: (876) 441- 5697