Local business plays role in fitness revolution

MOVERS AND SHAKERS — The women of Bodies By Bev g0t in one last class Monday morning before the end of the year at the Wintersville location.

WINTERSVILLE –The women of Bodies By Bev started to get fit before their next New Year’s resolution at Monday morning’s class located in Wintersville.

With another Bodies By Bev gym in Weirton, owner Beverly Thomas only plans to get more busy within the next few years.

“I hope by 2020 to add another location,” said Thomas. “Plus, I will be offering Beatboxing certification in Columbus in 2019 as well.”

The term Beatboxing is trademarked by Thomas.

“I started out with Zumba and lost 70 pounds,” she said. “I went and got certified in it, but because I used to box as well, I decided to combine Zumba and my past experince with boxing to create Beatboxing which is fun and still empowering.”

Bodies By Bev offers eight classes which include Beatboxing, Country Beatboxing, Zumba, Piyo, Hiphop Abs, P90x, belly dancing and toning.

Thomas opened her Wintersville location in 2015 and her Weirton gym in 2017.

“I taught at other facilities, but I wanted the freedom to give other people possibilities like I had, and to inspire my students,” explained Thomas. “All of my 11 instructors started as my students here.”

However, with the rewarding feeling that comes from owning a business also comes stress, which is why Thomas noted that she is grateful to have a good support system — like her daughter, Haily Prantil, who manages the Weirton gym.

“I would go insane without them,” joked Thomas.

Thomas has been a group fitness instructor for six years.

“My favorite part is how for one hour we dance together and shut out the world,” she said.

Thomas said the hardest part for her was getting up and walking through the doors when she began taking classes.

“If you feel intimidated by group fitness, don’t be,” she said. “We have all been there.”

The cost per class is $5 with monthly passes available.