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Kama Fitness Takes Fun Workouts To New Heights

By Pamela Sosnowski

As a fitness instructor and studio owner, Karlene Linxweiler knows that many people consider a workout something necessary to be endured instead of an activity they want to go. That's one of the reasons why she launched Kama Fitness, an aerial yoga studio in Manchester that takes the drudgery out of going to the gym by providing a fun, unique way to work out - in the air.

"Kama Fitness is about creating a feeling of empowerment and making your workout fun, rather than something you have to 'get through,'" she explains. "We primarily offer aerial fusion classes that increase strength, balance, endurance, and feels good in the body. Many of our student enjoy the creativity and beauty that is possible in the aerial silks, trapeze, and lyra (suspended hoops)."

Her studio is fitted with a variety of suspended equipment that is tested for safety (the aerial silks can withstand over 2,000 pounds of force) and made with hardware that allows the student to safely perform optimum movement through yoga poses and fitness moves. Classes include three different variations of aerial yoga including a candlelit class in the evening, aerial fitness, which builds additional muscle strength, aerial dance, and traditional classes performed on the floor. Mat yoga, Pilates, dance, and massage therapy are also offered.

A benefit of opting for the aerial classes over the floor format, according to Linxweiler, is that aerial is suitable for anybody, of any age, including those with limited physical capabilities. "Aerial is accessible to anyone and ANY body," she says. "People with previous injuries, disabilities, little physical activity or experience are all welcome to our studio. There is truly a class for everyone here. I have had many students tell me this (aerial yoga) is the first workout they've ever done that relieves their shoulder and back pain." All of the aerial classes focus on alignment, safety, and movement with close guidance by the studio's instructors.

As with any fitness class, there are some safety rules to abide by; students participating in aerial should not wear jewelry of any kind, as it can catch on and tear the silk fabric and potentially cause an injury. They should also avoid wearing baggy clothing and any clothing with hooks, zippers, or metal objects that can tear the fabric.Form fitting workout clothing, such as a sports bra and fitted shorts or leggings, is recommended. Nails should be trimmed and filed so they also won't catch on the equipment, and no shoes are allowed on the studio floor; students go barefoot or wear socks. Pre-registration is required of all classes and class sizes are kept small so that everyone receives individualized attention.

The facility is located in a renovated mill building in downtown Manchester, and offers plenty of free parking, restrooms and changing rooms, a kitchen, and a waiting area with a coffee and tea bar. The website says they've taught students that range in age from 6 to 86. Says Linxweiler, "Our goal is to provide a community of a balanced wellness program in the heart of the city of Manchester."

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