Kim Miller is the newest addition to the list. She became certified on Jan. 19 and started teaching in February.
Miller had been participating in Jazzercise as a student for more than 10 years when Rhonda Howard, the local Jazzercise instructor, informed her that she was looking for new instructors to help her meet the increasing demand for classes. Miller said she was eager to become a certified instructor because she really loved Jazzercise and enjoys feeling like she's helping people.
"I love the workout. It's like an addiction," Miller said. "It just makes you feel so good about yourself, and I wanted to help other people feel that way, too."
To become a certified instructor, Miller said she first had to apply and then get accepted into an audition program, which was held in Cincinnati. After traveling to Cincinnati, Miller was given an anatomy and physiology test and then had to participate in a two-day workshop during which she was taught 15 routines.
After learning the routines, Miller had to assume the role of Jazzercise instructor and perform the routines in front of a panel of judges, who determined whether or not she would be certified.
"It was very nerve-racking, and I made sure to practice two or three months before I went to try out," said Miller.
Miller found out on the second day of the workshop that she had passed her audition and was going to be become certified.
After returning to Harlan, she taught her first full class in February and is now teaching on Tuesday nights at 6:30 p.m. in the gym at the former Loyall Elementary School building.
She said that she is currently looking into teaching a Jazzercise class in Cumberland a couple days a week due to the high demand in that area.
"Several people have called from Cumberland and are really pushing for a class up there," she said.
The dance-oriented classes encompass a variety of musical genres, Miller said.
"Each jazzercise class consists of a series of dance routines set to popular music, such as Top 40, jazz, country, funk and classic," she said.
Each class begins with a gentle warmup, followed by a 30-minute aerobic workout, a muscle toning and strengthening segment and, finally, a stretch finale.
The choreography is fun and easy to follow, Miller said, and within weeks most participants find that their endurance has increased, along with their strength and flexibility. It provides participants with a sense of accomplishment and helps them to feel good about themselves.
"I fell in love with the program 24 years ago because of the fun workout and how good it made me feel," Howard said.
Jazzercise is committed to helping people understand the importance of health and fitness and to make it fun and exciting for them to get the exercise that they need.
"Once people attend their first class, they are hooked. Most people always end up coming back. They just fall in love with the program. The participants become like a big family," Howard said.
In Harlan County, approximately 100 members currently attend classes each week. According to Howard, there are 35 to 40 who attend each class. Classes are currently being taught three days a week.
Jazzercise classes are now being taught on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday nights at 6:30 p.m. in Loyall.