A fun way to step into Summer with confidence

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With summer time upon us and the moment to dust off our shorts and skirts looming, Crawley Observer reporter Nikki Cutler tried her hand at a new fitness craze.

FitSteps is a group exercise class in Crawley which promises to be ‘strictly fun’.



Instructor Gemma Hodsdon, 33, from Pound Hill, said her classes included elements of ballroom and Latin dances including the tango, salsa, jive, chacha and quick step,

She said: “It’s a feel good factor, because of the dance moves, you don’t always realise you’re exercising.

“They’re fast, fun and fierce, it’s fantastic!”

Gemma has been holding the classes in Maidenbower and Copthorne since last summer.



She added: “I’m probably known in Crawley as the aerobics instructor who makes you sweat!”

I went into the class with the idea that I would be partnered with someone and we would sway about the room to Ballroom music, but it was far more of a workout than I anticipated.

The class was structured like aerobics would be - with the members of the class following Gemma’s steps - but the moves were doing made it feel more like a dance class.

Gemma happily took inspiration from members of the class asking them what we were in the mood for and how energetic we were all feeling.



We started with a bit of chacha, a bouncy dance to get us warmed up, followed by the paso doble, a slower routine which worked our strength and endurance, then we tried the quick step - the name says it all.

Gemma was infectiously bubbly and energetic, she genuinely made me smile the whole way through and created a very social atmosphere.

By the end of the 40 minute session I felt energised and lifted for the rest of the day, not aching and tired like I might have felt after 40 minutes of standard aerobics. Plus I had learnt some new dance moves!

The fitsteps craze was created by some of the UK’s most famous ballroom dancers Natalie Lowe and Ian Waite and Britain’s most successful swimmer Mark Foster.



I would recommend Gemma’s class to anyone who likes to exercise with the help and motivation of a friend and some great feel-good tunes.

Anyone wanted to learn how to teach a class can sign up for the next instructor training day on June 8 at Hazelwick School, Hazelwick Mill lane. Visit the FitSteps website at: www.fitsteps.co.uk for details.

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