One of the best things about my Jazzercise class is the lack of mirrors. We don’t watch ourselves. Instead, we watch the instructor whooping it up on stage and imagine that we are performing as well, when, in reality, we are only swinging ourselves around half as much. Sometimes, I watch other people in class, too. I never notice anyone else looking around, but I suppose it happens. There’s a particular woman who has a sense of rhythm to die for. Actually, there are at least two. One woman exerts a modest amount of energy, but is all style. The other gives it everything she’s got and is also all style. I try to mimic them, but due to the lack of mirrors, I can’t tell if I’m succeeding.
I’ve never met a Jazzercise instructor I didn’t like. In addition to energy and style, they have personality. Our main instructor is fun because every now and then—without missing a beat in the routine—she starts giggling. I have a suspicion she is chuckling at me for trying to swivel my boyish hips around, but there’s no real evidence for this. After she giggles, she makes a joke like she just thought of something funny. Once she blurted out, “Life begins when the kids leave home and the dog dies.” I am still laughing about that one. But don’t worry, it’s just a joke, we all love our kids.
The worst part about jazzercising is when—right in the middle of a dance—we are told to turn and face the side of the room, then the back, and then the other side. Being directionally challenged, this upsets the apple cart for me, and I forget my steps. Or possibly, I forget my steps because I lose sight of the instructor. Help!! But others don’t seem to mind. They even let out a loud, happy shout as they turn to the back of the room. I need someone to explain this to me. Why exactly are we shouting? In any event, I am getting better at all this turning around, and suppose if I attended class every day (like some impressive people), I would appreciate the variety.
Speaking of variety, the music played in class is fantastic. I love it. One night, I looked up the video for one of the songs we danced to because I was so enthralled with it. This was a while ago, and, if you must know, it was “If I Was Your Boyfriend.” Well, my daughter heard me from her bedroom and shouted, “Mom, is that you listening to Justin Bieber!?” I’m not sure if I scored points with my daughter at that time, or not. Later, I referred to the young musician as Justin Beaver, which reassured her of my ignorance.
Occasionally, Jazzercise instructors sing along with the music. I hear that getting certified as an instructor does not require voice lessons. But who cares? It keeps the hour interesting. Besides, I noticed even Justin Bieber doesn’t sing as well when he’s dancing.