Let us set the scene for a second here: picture a carpeted conference room turned fitness studio enclosed in nearly floor to ceiling glass walls and filled with several students motivated to break a sweat. Sounds pretty inspiring, right? Well it was! The 2014 ESSENCE College Tour made its final stop at Hampton University on Thursday, October 30 during the school’s annual homecoming and brought along Pretty Girl Sweat to host a zumba dance workout and health seminar for students and alum.
Dozens of female students proved that even if it's homecoming, you don't get a free pass to slack off in the exercise department. The workout began with a stretch session led by Jessica Elaine Edwards, owner of Respectapole Dance Fitness, LLC. After participants warmed up and loosened their muscles, Kris Davis turned things up with an explosive zumba workout infused with hip hop and Latin moves while students stared through the glass windows with admiration.
Former Miss Hampton Shayma Sulaiman volunteered at the sweat session along with her best friends Antoinique Abraham and Branda Johnson. All three are recent grads from Hampton University and succeeded in Teen Diaries / Pretty Girls Sweat student programs.
We love a good workout and it's clear that Hamptonians do too! Not only did guests receive valuable health tips and a free fitness class, but they walked out with a few beauty products from UltraSheen and scored Pretty Girls Sweat merchandise. Yep, homecoming has never looked more healthy.
Teen Diaries Foundation Inc. is a 501(C)3 non-profit organization dedicated to mentoring aspiring journalists and providing positive, online content for young women who enjoy hip hop and pop culture. The direct service includes Pretty Girls Sweat fitness programs focused on motivating young women to live active lifestyles, participate in organized sports, and support the fight against childhood obesity as well as a mentoring portion dedicated to linking young girls with professional women who work in the entertainment industry. The Pretty Girls Sweat (PGS) Ambassador program gives college students the opportunity to encourage their peers to stay fit by giving them a platform to create and publish inspirational social media content and host on-campus fitness gatherings. Check out a short video below that explains the popular program. In addition, the Teen Reporter Program provides hands on and e-mentoring to high school and college age students interested in pursuing careers in journalism (such as online media, radio, TV, newspaper, and magazines) and annual college scholarships to 16 carefully selected reporters. For more information on how you can empower teen girls through career development and fitness click here.
Jessica Elaine Edwards, owner of Respectapole Dance Fitness, LLC, was born and raised in Flint, Michigan and attended Flint Northern High School where she participated in the marching band, Girl Scouts, and track & field. After high school, she graduated from Hampton University in December of 2001 with her Bachelors Degree in Business Marketing. After graduating college at Hampton University, she was hired by the Fortune 500 Company Johnson and Johnson to work in their Sales and Marketing Department at their home office in Titusville, New Jersey. I was later promoted to become a Pharmaceutical Representative for Johnson & Johnson where she spent the next 9 years selling various medical devices and pharmaceutical products such as antibiotics, pain medications, anti-fungals, Alzheimer’s, anti-psychotics, and acid reflux medications to health physicians and nurses in the health and wellness industry. Having spent many years working in the field of Sales & Marketing representing health and wellness, she found her passion for health and fitness. It was then that she decided to go into business for herself doing what she loves in the health and fitness industry. In October 2009, she became the founder and CEO of Respectapole Dance Fitness in the city of Hampton. In the past 5 years Respectapole Dance Fitness has helped over 3000 women with their fitness goals while at the same time boosted self-confidence and self-esteem. Respectapole Dance Fitness has grown from a 500 sq ft facility to a 2500 sq ft facility in the past 5 years featuring 2 dance fitness studios inside with 10 employees and instructors.
Kris Davis, is an awesome mom of four and proud wife! The Hampton, Virginia native has always understood the importance of being fit. Kris finally pursude her dreams and calling for fitness in 2012 after being bitten by the Zumba bug. Recognizing a need for personalized motivation in fitness; she became a Zumba Zin and then a Certified Personal Trainer. Since opening her own business iCONQUER,LLC in the Hampton Roads area; she motivates and encourages others to "just start" and "conquer the moment". iCONQUER,LLC; empowers people in search of positive realistic fitness programs. Kris has devoted her business to all levels of fitness. God is her rock and she expresses her gratitude for his gift by blessings others through fitness.
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Photo Credit: Antoinique Abraham