OULA Offers a Fun and Laughter-Induced High Intensity Workout
Bored with the same old workout routine? Maybe it’s time to check out OULA, a one hour, high-octane, crazy-fun dance craze that’s rockin’ the floors of local gyms and dance studios alike. This high-intensity cardio is a dance-based workout created by Missoula resident Kali Lindner in an attempt “to push her students to break through not only physical but emotional boundaries, to dance with reckless abandon, to give and receive fierce self-love, and to unite our community together through positivity, passion and health,” according to her website.
Great Falls OULA instructor, Bethony Chabot, tried it and was instantly hooked. The workouts are designed around 15 to 16 top 40’s songs that follow an emotional arc, starting and ending with warm-up and cool-down tempos, while in between, building up to intense, let-it-all-go peaks.
“It may take a few classes to get accustomed, but people typically pick it up quickly,” Chabot says.
OULA is both physically and emotionally appealing. It includes conditioning specific to various parts of the body. “It connects the mind and body through movement plus OULA incorporates new songs with new routines each week to keep things fresh and exciting,” says Chabot.
The moves come from a mix of different types of dance and incorporate the mind-body connection of yoga with the movement fitness technique, Nia, a mind-body fitness technique that emerged in the ‘80’s.
Participants, often referred to as Oulagins, are encouraged to be loud, sing to their favorite songs, make big, expressive movements and dance free of judgement. Primarily geared towards women, OULA is part dance, part revival meeting combined with pure, non-stop contagious energy. The music is loud enough to get you moving but not too loud where you can’t hear Chabot’s instruction and encouragement.
OULA routines are created around moves that make you feel good. It’s a unique 60 minute experience that has Oulagins squatting, hopping, dancing the Charleston while completely oblivious to the fact they are getting a great workout.
Chabot instructs classes at Miss Linda’s School of Dance in Great Falls. Classes are also offered in a number of other locations including Helena, Havre and Townsend. For a complete listing of classes and schedules, check out www.oulafitness.com or find an OULA Facebook page for your area.