“Dancing is better than working out on a treadmill,” says Jessy Mancha, owner of the new Remixx Fitness studio in the Montview Plaza. “Dancing makes you forget your problems. You just dance with your heart and feel the music, have fun for an hour.”
Mancha, a certified Zumba instructor since 2010, combines his background in Mexican dance with his Zumba workouts. Mancha has danced with Denver’s Grupo Folklorico Sabor Latino since he was 10. Grupo Folklorico preserves and performs, at a professional level, the dances that reflect Mexico’s regions and cultures. He performs at large festivals and previously traveled with the group. “My sister and I danced and traveled for 10 years, performing at mariachi festivals all over Colorado, Wyoming and Nebraska. I also studied martial arts and musical instruments, but it’s always back to dance for me,” he said.
Remixx Fitness opened in April, just east of Bill Roberts ECE-8 School, in Aurora. Mancha previously taught at both the Central Park and MLK Recreation centers for more than six years. “I wanted to stay close to Stapleton to stay close to my following. I hope to integrate the surrounding areas of Park Hill and Aurora too.”
Mancha uses what he learned in Folklorico dance to enrich his Zumba classes. “Folklorico dance sets reflect the various regions of Mexico, including Veracruz and Tabasco. Zumba comes from many dance styles, including cumbia, salsa, merengue, mambo, flamenco, reggaeton, samba and tango. I took my style from Folklorico dance and integrated it into the Zumba fitness styles.”
He said a difference for students at Remixx is the no-judge, no-competition approach. Students range in age from 4 to 82 years old and are of all races. “I want the instructors and students to feel welcome. This is a studio that caters to the community and families. Different sizes, ages and colors don’t matter. Don’t worry about whether you can dance better than somebody else because we’re all here together for fun. Everyone can do it. There’s always a reason to dance, even if you think you can’t dance.”
Mancha also teaches Zumba toning and circuit training. Jordan Sondrup Rowse teaches yoga and hip-hop dance. Mancha plans to expand Remixx’s offerings for adults to include one-on-one training, salsa dance and ballet fusion; and for kids, break dancing and Zumba. “The different kinds of fitness classes will help kids, whether they are obese or just want to have fun,” Mancha said.
A group of Mancha’s students—calling themselves on the website “his biggest Zumba fans that love him”—conducted a fundraising campaign to pay for the studio’s setup. “They got wall-to-wall mirrors and good stereo speakers and stands for the studio,” he said.
“Having my own studio is my lifelong dream and I started it on a shoestring,” Mancha said. “Now I can teach what I’ve been taught—to give back from what I’ve been given. I enjoy every single day.”
Prices for group fitness classes range from $89.99 per month for six months of unlimited classes, to a $10 drop-in fee. Students can purchase six classes in a month for $55. Salsa and kids dance classes have their own prices.