A WEARSIDE gym with a zest for fitness has become the first to launch a new dance craze from the stars of Strictly Come Dancing.
Debra de Luen and Tanya Walker, of Club Zest Ladies Leisure in Sea Road, have become two of only three instructors in the North East to be trained to teach FitSteps.
The exercise coaches were among the first 500 people in the country to take part in the training course led by stars of the BBC1 show Natalie Lowe and Ian Waites, who created the new exercise routine.
The dancers from the hit TV programme – watched by more than 14million people during last series – worked with six-time world champion swimmer Mark Foster and a group of health and fitness professionals to produce what they call a “unique dance and fitness programme”.
The class combines Latin and ballroom dances such as the tango, cha-cha, quick step and waltz with fitness techniques, and is performed to songs such as Blurred Lines by Robin Thicke featuring Pharrell Williams, and At This Moment by Michael Bublé.
Natalie and Ian say the class is suitable for beginners and people of all fitness levels, and dancers do not need a partner.
Debra and Tanya have been named “pioneer” instructors, and they will help to promote and teach the dance class in Whitburn and Fulwell.
Debra, owner of Club Zest and a fitness instructor for 24 years, said the class is up to date and fun, but hard work.
“I think what I’ve found about it is that it’s all music that people know, and that they can sing along to while they dance,” she said.
“A lot of people have done Latin and ballroom, so it’s fun to come back to it again, and it’s a great workout.
“The class gets your heart beating and your body sweating.”
Classes will be run at Club Zest three times a week, and by Tanya, a fitness instructor for about eight years, at Whitburn Parish Church Hall on Thursdays.
Debra, said: “I’ve done a couple of taster classes with people who have all really enjoyed it. It’s a hard workout, so everyone was shattered at the end, but the classes went really well.
“It’s very different, and people will love it.”
For more information, tel. 516 9898.