This week I’d like to highlight a Dover community member that has fostered a group of supportive, confident, and healthy women. Aimee Chiappini, co-owner of Best Fitness Fun, and mother of two amazing children, Jean Paul and Gianna, has grown a following for her fun, challenging, and high-energy Zumba classes. This October, she will celebrate her fifth year of teaching Zumba with the students that have made it all possible.
Aimee teaches many classes, and her schedule can be found at zumbawithaimee.weebly.com, but if you are just starting out, I recommend going to her Tuesday class at 7pm at the Patterson Rec. She offers a student appreciation discount on Tuesdays, all students can take the class for $5.
Aimee started teaching Zumba by accident. She began going to classes in Wingdale as a break from her hectic home life. Two months into the class, her instructor decided to move to another location. She suggested that Aimee take a certification class and take over for her. She took the class, and her new career began to align. When Aimee and her loving husband Fabio decided that it was time to take Zumba on as a full time job, Patterson Rec called with a new opening for a Zumba instructor!
Since she began her Zumba career, Aimee has been building a community. From her first few dancers, to the dozens of women she teaches today, Aimee values and cares for each and every one of her students. She takes their abilities and preferences into account when creating playlists for her classes, mixing challenging songs with fan favorites to keep them engaged. Mixed with all the fun, is Aimee’s genuine concern for safety. She has gone above and beyond Zumba requirements and is CPR and First Aid certified, and carries the necessary equipment with her to every class. She also makes sure that each student only pushes themselves to a healthy level. She demonstrates modified moves for beginners or for students who are recovering from an accident or surgery. Aimee says that there is “an instructor for every student” and she hopes that her concern and effort appeals to students who want to learn and gain confidence.
Zumba, with all its hip rolls and latin moves, can be uncomfortable at first. There is a barrier between the student and what they think they can do. The greatest reward for Aimee is seeing the transformation in her students. She said, “It brings me joy to see the how students start with frustration and blossom and grow into themselves.” While talking to a student, Aimee discussed the extra element that Zumba can bring to life. Many of her students take Zumba to get healthy, and a barrier for many people to start healthy lives is becoming more social. They discusses and said that“When you are overweight, it is harder to be social, and it can be hard to learn how to be social as you become healthier.” Aimee acknowledges this and has created a fun, accepting, confidence-building environment where women can get healthy and also make friends. I know that she has had a tremendous impact on my life. My mom used to be very uncomfortable with exercise, and herself. But, Aimee’s classes and friendship have helped my mom blossom into a happy, confident woman. I could not thank her enough for that. So I’d just like to express my appreciation for a community member who strives to help her students become healthier, happier, more confident people.