I started doing Zumba in April 2016.  At that time I wore a size 12.  I didn't think I'd get through my first class.  I was so out of shape!  But, I loved the Latin music, the non judgmental atmosphere, and the wonderful friends that I made.  Since that time, I've lost 26lbs.  I can now get into a size 6.  Zumba in the morning gives me energy for the whole day!  I feel healthier than I ever have.  I owe this transformation to the energy I get from Luvia and my Zumba classmates.  We are more than classmates, we are friends.  It doesn't matter where you are with your health and fitness; when you get into this workout, you will feel better, and look better.  By the way, you should see how my medical numbers...blood pressure, cholesterol, etc. have improved.  Zumba is healthy!

When I first moved to WV  2 1/2 years ago I went to

a Zumba class twice and I didn't like it at all. It was 

NOTHING like my previous Zumba class that I did. I tried swimming and using machines at YMCA, but I just wasn't motivated. I hate exercising. I didn't know anyone here in WV so I didn't have anyone I could call

to go and workout with me. So I just didn't go. My husband was always at the gym, running. But, I just didn't like to workout with him (because I am lazy and he would make me work too hard or push myself and I just didn't like it). I found myself gaining weight again (I was at 262 lbs in June 2016) then I started having more issues with my knees again, so I decided to give Zumba a try again.

My husband said "since we already have a YMCA membership why don't you just go there instead of paying to go someplace else?" (I was going to go to someplace in Marietta that I met at a festival). So, I decided to go back to the YMCA and try Zumba one more time. I started in Sept. 2016 and I LOVED IT. I was like this is what I needed. The first few classes were with Katrina and I was like if I can just learn the dances I can do it...So, I recorded her and went home and practiced them, so when I kept going back I knew them a little bit. Well one day I came in and there was another instructor and she was tough... Luvia. She made me do those squats and my body didn't like her the first few times, LOL. I still loved it and I kept going back. In December 2016 I was down to 230lbs (and that was only doing Zumba!!!) I said ''Go Me!!'' I also noticed I went from size 18 down to 14 and 16 in my jeans (all of the size 18's I bought for Christmas were TOO BIG!!! I had to take them back and I was able to get 14's and 16's....Super excited for me!! My husband noticed as well. He stopped going the gym altogether when he hurt his leg in December but I still go. I followed them to Serenity and now to the Vienna Gym and the YMCA. My husband tells me all the time that he is very proud of me and he notices the weight loss. As of February 2017 I am down to about 216lbs. I am LOVING Zumba and sooooo glad that I went back and found  Katrina and Luvia's Zumba class. I am now going Monday thru Thursday..... Just think how I would be if I eat good as well...Thank you so much Luvia and Katrina for helping me get my Sexy back. Love you ladies and your classes.

Kiauntee Akers

Dance has been my life since I first started taking lessons as a child. Ballet, contemporary, modern, hip hop, jazz...and the list goes on. When I moved to the MOV area 2 years ago, I left behind a dance studio in the DC Metro area that I loved. I couldn't imagine finding anything else that would bring me the happiness and freedom of movement that I found there. I was a bit lost here without a place to dance. A coworker suggested I try these Zumba classes, and it didn't take long for me to realize how amazing Zumba is for your mind, body, and soul. Zumba is different than any other workout. It's the freedom of dance without the technique and control, and it's exercise that is so much fun you rarely remember that you are actually exercising. I am able to get lost in the music, the movement, and the fun. My stress disappears during Zumba. I dance with my friends, and focus on being happy and healthy me. That's what Zumba does for me, and that's why you will see me rockin' out at Zumba with Katrina and Luvia at least three times a week. I've enjoyed Zumba so much that I decided to get certified as an instructor. I believe Zumba can be a great experience for anyone and everyone, and I want to be a part of fostering that happiness and healthiness. I'm slowly working on routines, and I'm still learning. Katrina and Luvia have been amazingly supportive Zumba mentors and instructors. I'm truly thankful for these classes with my Zumba people! Everyone in our classes has a different Zumba story, and this is mine. What's your story?

Zumba helped save my life. It sounds ridiculous and fantastical but it's true. In June of 2016, I attended my first Zumba class with Katrina and Luvia. I was several months postpartum with my third baby and I was severely overweight and flirting with depression. I had totally lost my sense of self like most mothers of very young children. "Me time" was an absolute joke. For me, exercise was akin to giving a cat a bath. I was desperately searching for something to make me hate it less when I stumbled into Katrina's Tuesday night class at the YMCA. I was the heaviest person in the class and easily the least coordinated. I'm also an introvert so the entire situation was terrifying. Katrina and Luvia's class left me feeling happier than I had felt in a long time in spite of being wildly out of my comfort zone and an unmitigated disaster on the dance floor. I started going twice a week and suddenly didn't mind the treadmill as much on the other five days. Luvia is phenomenal at building up stamina and endurance; Katrina is a master in encouraging agility. Their music is great at lifting your mood even on dark days. Fast forward almost 100 lbs and about a year later, I am much healthier and happier. My body is young again and I have made several friends from the class that know me as more than "mom" (can I get an amen!?). I look forward to each class and run for the door like Maury just told me I AM the father when it's time to go. I have enjoyed their class so much that it inspired me to get my own Zumba certification. The changes I have experienced in the last year are mind boggling. I hope someday to help someone as much as they have helped me.

My goal is to stay Healthy and Happy. January of this year I was excited to learn that Vienna Health & Wellness Center was going to start Zumba classes. I did'nt know what to expect but was willing to give it a try. I took that first class and enjoyed it very much. I now go to classes every week.The cardio has helped to lower my blood pressure,strengthen my core and my arms,also with everyday stress.For the Happy part- I just Love Zumba ! It is great to take a class that has a fun instructor like Luvia and exercise to Amazing music. The class radiates positive energy and I would encourage others to Join us !

-Nance Rawson

I started regularly attending Zumba in April 2017, shortly after Katrina and Luvia began offering classes at the Vienna gym. I had intermittently attended their classes in a different location a year earlier, but my busy schedule and my kids’ sports practices had prevented me from keeping up with it. When I heard they were offering classes on multiple days at multiple times in my own neighborhood, I knew that I was out of excuses! I started out with Beginner Zumba and made sure I stayed in the back corner. Although the cardio was hard, the choreography came pretty easy to me, which is what makes it so much fun! Fast forward about three months, and I’m now the one that is front and center in the class. Zumba has given me the confidence to put my whole heart into the routine, because I know what I’m doing is good for me…and my husband and kids can appreciate that. I attend class three times a week, and now have even started Aqua Zumba, which is basically just a big party in the pool! We dance, we laugh, we get tan! Aqua Zumba has a totally different feel to it because every move is done with resistance through the water. It’s a completely different workout! And it’s great for beginners because no one can see your moves under the water! Since starting Zumba, I’ve noticed my overall mood is better and I’ve lost a dress size. I enjoy Katrina’s enthusiasm, always smiling and giving every single person high-fives after class, and I appreciate Luvia’s encouragement, always pushing us to “whoop” louder or squat lower or shake it faster! Zumba has even become a part of my home life now because as I’m listening to the radio with my kids, if a Zumba song comes on, they know I have to drop everything and dance!

-Tracie Rather

I never thought as a Senior Citizen that I would be in a ZUMBA class! After eight months, I feel more energetic and notice that my jeans even fit better! I always look forward to the classes and enjoy the variety of upbeat music.

Mostly I enjoy the smiles, energy, and encouragement  of our instructor, Luvia!!

Thank you so very much!!

-Rita Gessner

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