Jazzercise – Started in San Diego

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Jazzercise HeadquartersJudi Sheppard Missett moved to San Diego in 1972 and created what would become the widely popular fitness program, Jazzercise. Starting as a single instructor at the La Jolla YMCA and Oceanside Parks and Recreation, Judi taught a fitness program using jazz dance. She developed the idea based on her experience as a professional dancer. In 1977, Judi began training other instructors. The growing interest in Jazzercise instruction led her to create training videos. This helped to quickly spread Jazzercise across the country and around the globe. The fitness program caught fire by the 80′s. Unlike other fitness crazes of the 80′s, Jazzercise has stood the test of time. Judi, and her daughter Shanna Missett Nelson, now oversee 7,200 instructors teaching 32,000 classes weekly in 32 countries. (I wish I could multiply myself 7,200 times to carry out my life’s purpose!) Jazzercise employs 161 support personnel from its headquarters in Carlsbad. In 1985, the Small Business Administration named Judi “Small Business Person of the Year.” She continues to receive recognition for taking a single idea and creating such a lasting business endeavor. Most recently, Judi was a featured entrepreneur in the book, ‘Chicken Soup for the Entrepreneur’s Soul’. Learn more about some of the basic Jazzercise movements. If you are interested in taking a class, I found 32 programs available in San Diego. Classes are also available on DVD. I think it is only natural that a fitness program like Jazzercise got its start in temperate San Diego, where people love to stay in shape. In future posts, I’ll talk about other San Diego based health companies, 24-Hour Fitness and Jenny Craig.

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