When I was about four or five, my mom enrolled my sister and me in dance classes. Ballet, tap--that sorta thing. A couple of weeks into it, Lois, the owner & one of the teachers, approached my mother after a class. Lois told my mom that my sister had a natural talent for dance and my mom may want to consider getting her involved in more classes. My mother was delighted.
"That's great!" she said. "And what about Kristin?"
Lois tried to maintain the smile on her face. "She...um...well...she certainly has fun with it!"
Oh. Yes. She. Did.
Lois was right about me having fun, though. And so began my lifelong obsession with choreographed dance. Even now, dance is the only exercise that doesn't feel like exercise to me. It just feels like a party. And like I'm kicking ass on So You Think You Can Dance. Oh, and definitely like I'm performing with the Chicago Bulls' Luvabulls during halftime. Sometimes I even pretend that I'm in a dance-off with Janet Jackson or J-Lo. I always win, of course. I'm a nerd. Deal with it.
A while back my best friend took me to MaZi, a dance and fitness studio in Wicker Park, and I've been borderline obsessed ever since. MaZi has a wide selection of cardio and body sculpting classes from which to choose. So far I've taken Ballerina Fight Club, Ballerina Bum Bootcamp, Skinny Jeans, and Urban Hip Hop Cardio. I'm in love with them all. Obviously, my favorite is Urban Hip Hop because the whole class is dance. It's so much fun I hate to see the hour end. That's never happened to me with conventional exercise classes. The Ballerina Fight Club class is crazy intense; come ready to work. Ballerina Bum Bootcamp is awesome, and I'm not just saying that because butt exercises are my favorite. Maybe I am. Skinny Jeans kinda speaks for itself, no? It's a slimming and lengthening class, and it kicks your butt as much as the others.
MaZi's studio is pretty spacious and comfortable which makes all the difference in a dance class. There's enough room that you don't have to worry about falling into anyone or waving your arms and giving someone a black eye. The instructors are friendly and highly motivating. In every class I've attended, they're giving 110 percent.
I do have to say, though, that the classes are a little pricey. The drop-in single class rate is $19, and the unlimited monthly package is $159 per month. Yeah...ouch. Also, some days there are no morning class offerings, so if you can't make it in the evening you're out of luck that day.
On the whole, MaZi is a cool studio with great classes, and if you can manage to get in at least a couple of classes a week, I have no doubt that you'll have a good time and realize some physical benefits.
Has anyone else been to MaZi? What was your experience like? Any recommendations for other great dance studios in Chicago? Let me know!
Filed under: Workouts