Josie Stickley runs Clubbercise - a dancing keep fit class. Pictured: Josie Stickley at Park Community School, Havant on Thursday 7th October 2021. Picture: Habibur Rahman
Clubbercise fitness classes take place across Hampshire and are open to anyone, although they are particularly popular amongst women and young people.
The classes have disco lights, UV lights and glow sticks, and participants learn monthly routines.
Clubbercise owner Josie Stickley, 35, from Gosport, said: ‘It’s a really clever concept for people who maybe want to get back into fitness or have never done any type of fitness class before, but they’re a bit self-conscious or have that worry of what they look like.
Josie Stickley runs Clubbercise - a dancing keep fit class. Pictured: Josie Stickley with her class at Park Community School, Havant on Thursday 7th October 2021 Picture: Habibur Rahman
‘As soon as those lights go out you lose yourself and you’re not worried about what other people are doing or thinking.’
With a background in dance and dance teaching, Josie started the classes with her first session in Gosport having 15 attendees.
More than six years later, Josie ran 30 sessions a week pre-Covid with a team of 13 instructors and hundreds of participants.
When the first lockdown was announced, Josie had to stop the classes immediately.
Within a week she had converted to online classes using Facebook Live. Choosing to use Facebook rather than platforms like Zoom enabled participants to stay hidden from view, so they could still freely dance along to the classes in their own homes, without being seen by others.
Josie said that although the online classes had their constraints, they also created a huge community. Each session had around 200 participants from all over the world.
She said: ‘We sort of became this big, online family that motivated each other every day.
‘As much as it was a really hard time, it created something special.’
The online classes are still running to cater for the online community and those who cannot attend in person. The in-person sessions are gradually getting back to normal but with safety measures in place, such as the maximum capacity being reduced to 35 people to enable social distancing.
Josie wants to continue expanding the classes to more locations and plans to grow her team even more next year.
In person classes are £6 and online classes are £2.50. For all the information on dates, times, venues and to book, visit Clubbercise with Josie on Facebook, or contact Josie on 07841 836442.
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