Jazzercise On Location
A Jazzercise Taping At La Quinta Resort In California
Each year, the Jazzercise corporation hosts an event called "On Location," during which a live taping of new choreography is filmed with conference participants. These new routines are then distributed on DVD to the 7,300 Jazzercise franchises around the world for instructors to learn and then lead in their classes.
In addition to the taping session, the two-day event includes specialty fitness classes and other fun activities. Not to mention the chance to pick up some new Jazzercise duds ... unless you're like me and wear over-sized t-shirts and plain old spandex shorts.
So, in 2009, the On Location fitness party was held June 26th and 27th in southern California. It was my first experience at one of these events. Twelve of us from Flagstaff, Arizona's Mountain Sky Jazzercise studio drove out together for some fun and exercise.
Here, I'll share with you the information about the trip and some photos from the event as well as my reviews of the classes and other aspects of the conference.
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On Location Daily Activities And Fitness Classes
For The Jazzercise Spa Getaway I Attended
**You can click on the links in the schedule to skip down to my reviews of the classes.**
- 8:00 am: Spa La Quinta
- 10:00 am: Event Registration & Event T-shirt pickup
- 10:00 am: Shopping Expo opens: There will be a variety of vendors here, including Jazzertogs.
- 4:30 pm: Routine Taping with Jazzercise founder, Judi Sheppard Missett, Shanna Missett Nelson, and the Jazzercise Taping Team
- 4:30 pm: Shopping Expo closes
- 8:00 am: Spa La Quinta
- 8:00 am: Aquamotion with Liz Cervantes-Slavin
- 8:30 am: Golf LaQuinta
- 9:00 am: Camp La Quinta: for children ages 4 and up. (Reservations are required. Call 760-564-4111 ext. 7260)
- 9:00 am: Jazzercise Showcase with Instructors
- 10:00 am: Stretch with Judi Sheppard Missett and Chere vanLigten
- 11:00 am: Street Jazz with Tim Roberts & Shanna Missett Nelson
- 12:00 noon: Lunch or Spa on your own
- 3:00 pm: Ballroom Bounce with Tim Roberts
- 4:00 pm: Pilates Mat with Judi Way
- 5:00 pm: Dancin' Abs with Shanna Missett Nelson & Young McCarthy
- 6:00 pm: Cocktail Reception, Cash Bar
- 7:00 pm: Shopping Expo closes
This event sold out in less than two weeks, so if you're interested in attending a future On Location taping, don't hesitate; make your reservation ASAP.
Watching Jazzercise through the decades before the taping
On Location Jazzercise Class Reviews
Review: The Jazzercise Routine Taping
New routines for Jazzercisers around the globe
It was like being at a concert, with the large center screen above the stage and two screens on either side, the crowd cheering the films they were seeing--images of Jazzercise in the 80s, 90s and 2000s--as they waited for the the "show" to begin.
There may have been as many as 1000 people--the vast majority of them women, but I did see some random men--all decked out in Jazzertogs and other workout wear (even a few in regular cotton tees, like me) in a large, carpeted room, dark except for the stage lights. The room was air-conditioned--certainly cooler than the 110 degrees outside--but with all of those bodies in such close proximity, I was hardly the only one sweating while just standing there.
And when Judi Sheppard Missett and the rest of the taping team appeared on stage and those 1000 bodies started dancing, everyone was dripping and drenched in no time.
With 29 routines to tape and "do overs" anytime someone on stage goofed or didn't do a move correctly, we knew it would be a long session. And it was. Three hours of Jazzercise with, I believe, four re-starts, at least one of which after the whole routine was finished.
It was on the verge of unbearably hot in there, but the energy, both on stage and on the floor, kept me going. And, as time went on, the crowd thinned noticeably, so there was more room to move without whacking someone.
Speaking of space to dance, I thought it was funny how a lot of people, before the taping began, stood with their legs spread wide and hands on their hips, as if to save more room for themselves. Once the dancing began, though, that effort surely went out the window as the crowd shifted.
Overall, the routine taping session was great fun and an amazing workout. If you love Jazzercising, I highly recommend attending one of these events.
Here's A Glimpse Of The Jazzercise Taping Session
This brief video was made by my friend from Mountain Sky Jazzercise, who brought along her buddy, Blue Lobster. You'll see him pop up for a split second.
Review: Jazzercise Showcase
There was no easing into THIS class!
Little did I know the first class of Day 2 would start out with a routine that would take us to the top of the curve right off the bat, unlike regular Jazzercise classes that begin with a light routine. To the contrary, this class got our heart rates up from the first minute to not long before the last. I heard this was called a Jazz To The Max class.
After the class was over, I did hear a few complaints about that--that people wished they'd been advised to warm up a bit beforehand--but I didn't mind it at all, especially with, like the day before at the taping, all the energy in the room. People cheered and kept up the intensity throughout the hour.
Apparently, some folks had also expected this class to showcase more instructors, beyond the four that came onto the stage and stayed throughout the hour.
Review: Jazzercise Stretch
With Judi Sheppard Missett and Chere vanLigten
Ever since I joined a Jazzercise studio back in 2006, I've been hearing about how flexible Judi Sheppard Missett is--how she can lift her leg up to her ear without using her hands.
And now I know that to be true. As Judi herself put it, "Not bad for an old broad!" Even if she weren't in her mid-sixties (not that she looks it!), I'd say her flexibility is incredible. The crowd cheered whenever she showed us what she can do.
This was a great class and a wonderful way to follow the high-energy Jazzercise Showcase. Judi and Chere were in impeccable form, and they inspired me to try to emulate them.
I wish I could take this class after each of the regular Jazzercise classes I attend back home.
You CAN Do Jazzercise Stretch At Home - with this DVD
Very flexible Jazzercise founder, Judi Sheppard Misset, takes you through 10 original stretch routes, which will Increase your flexibility (maybe not AS flexible as Judi, who can do some things with her legs that almost don't seem human), improve your posture, and help you relax.
Available from third-party sellers on Amazon.
The teenage Junior Jazzercisers dance for us.
Review: Street Jazz
With Tim Roberts and Shanna Missett-Nelson
I had no idea what this class would be like, and I was more than pleasantly surprised. Unlike regular Jazzercise classes, where you run right through the songs, following along as the instructor cues the moves, Street Jazz was all about learning choreography like I imagine you would if trying out for a Broadway show or for the finals on the television show, So You Think You Can Dance.
And Tim Roberts was great! He and Shanna, who also had an engaging personality on stage (not to mention a figure to envy!), would show us a move or two or three, then we'd repeat. We'd go over the sequence a few times, then do it to music. Then the next sequence would be added, we'd link the sequences together, then move on to the next set of moves.
This class got my heart rate going more than the taping or the Showcase class, actually, because it was stop-and-go, stop-and-go. And when we'd go, it was fast-paced. So it was like doing intervals. I got more fatigued during Street Jazz than I did during three hours of dancing during the taping session.
Here's A Look At Tim Roberts And Street Jazz
You Can Learn A Street Jazz Routine At Home - With Tim Robbins and Shanna Missett Nelson
First you have to learn the choreography, but the nice thing is, if you don't get it right away, you can do as many "do-overs" as you want in the privacy of your own home. Then, when you've got it down, this will become a sustained exercise routine you can do over and over again to whatever music you prefer, be it at home or in the grocery store.
Available from third-party sellers on Amazon.
Review: Ballroom Bounce
With Tim Roberts
I loved this class, even more than Street Jazz. Tim Roberts is fun, funny and excellent at cuing the moves. He taught it so well, in my opinion, that I still remember the entire routine more than week after the class.
After we'd learned the whole routine, Tim asked that instructors only take the floor while the rest of us moved to the side. Then the instructors performed on their own. Next, it was time for the students to show what they could do. Kind of a little dance-off.
I felt like I was part of a huge chorus line and imagined I was dancing in a show as both instructors and students took the floor together again and went through the whole routine one last time.
More Street Jazz Jazzercising with Tim Roberts
Our sweaty group poses after class.
Review: Pilates Mat
With Judi Way
This was the first time I'd ever tried a full-on Pilates class. And, to be honest, it really wasn't my thing. Maybe other Pilates classes would be different, but ... well, I have a hard time listening to someone breathe into a microphone for an hour. "Chhhhhhhh .... chhhhhhhh!" And it was just too slow for me. Even though I really enjoyed the stretch class earlier in the day, this one actually bored me.
That isn't to say it wasn't an excellent Pilates class and a great workout. There were many people who really liked it. I just didn't enjoy it, myself.
Review: Dancin' Abs
With Shanna Missett Nelson and Young McCarthy
This was a fantastic class! Shanna and Young were as full of energy as ever with great stage personalities and form. During this class, there were also featured "top" instructors dancing on blocks around the room.
All of the routines in this class were familiar, as they were recent routines we've all done at our local Jazzercise studios. Each time a song began, the crowd cheered just like at a concert, and you could tell everyone knew the moves (and the words to the songs). But I don't think I've ever done these routines quite so energetically. I felt every muscle, especially my obliques, for days afterward.
I'd say this was my second favorite class after Ballroom Bounce.
You Can Do Jazzercise Dancin' Abs At Home - with the 90-minute DVD
The workout you get from this DVD, led by Shanna Misset Nelson, has the same intensity as what you'd get in a "live" class.
Available from third-party sellers on Amazon. (The video, that is; not the abs.)
Which Class Was Your Favorite?
If you attended this or another Jazzercise On Location event, which was your favorite class?
La Quinta Resort And Spa
The Jazzercise "On Location" Location
This Jazzercise On Location event was held at California's La Quinta Resort & Club, part of the Waldorf=Astoria Collection.
- Spanish Hacienda-style casitas, suites and spa villas
- 41 pools and 53 whirlpools
- 23,000-foot Spa La Quinta with 49 treatment rooms
- 7 restaurants
- 11 boutique shops
- 5 golf courses at the resort and nearby PGA West
- Camp La Quinta for kids
- 23 tennis courts, 10 of them lighted
- Fitness center and Mind & Body Studio
- High-speed internet access
The resort is located at 49-499 Eisenhower Drive in La Quinta, CA 92253.
Review: The Location
La Quinta Resort
Our group of twelve from Mountain Sky Jazzercise in Flagstaff had a few different types of rooms at the resort, and they were all really nice. The one-bedroom suite I stayed in with four other girls (two in the king-sized bed, one on a roll-away, one on the couch and one--me--on an air mattress) had a large bedroom with French doors opening to a living room, a kitchen (minus a stove) with a full refrigerator and a microwave, one full bathroom that was large enough for all of us to Jazzercise in if we'd wanted to, two gas fireplaces, a second half-bath, two flat-screen TV's, and four sets of French doors that opened onto our own private yard with a jacuzzi and outdoor seating and beach chairs.
The whole La Quinta Resort facility was immaculate and very cushy (especially to me, who sleeps in a tent on most of my vacations). I really have no complaints whatsoever about the location, other than the fact that I wish the large room where all the classes and the taping took place had had ceiling fans to move the air-conditioned air around a bit.
My only major gripe was the extremely high cost of food on the resort grounds, not to mention the price of the drinks at the cocktail reception immediately following the Dancing Abs class. None of the drinks were complimentary, and, so I was told (because I didn't actually attend but went back to the suite to grab the first shower instead), the drinks were between $7 and $11 apiece! Wow. Even for a diet soda? No thanks.
So if they hold the Jazzercise On Location event at La Quinta again in the future, I'd recommend bringing some groceries along, as we did. We saved a lot of money that way and ate very healthy meals.
The bathroom in our La Quinta suite was large enough to Jazzercise in.
Where's La Quinta?
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© 2009 Deb Kingsbury