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    Single Mom Opens Unique Glowing Fitness Studio Despite Fire Crisis
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    In 2012 local contortion, aerial and fire performer Jeanette Martinez was engulfed by flames during a performance, leaving her with second and third degree burns. After 30 years of performing Martinez was told she would have to give up for good and file for disability. After the fire, Martinez had several laser surgeries on her abdomen, face and chest. She's had expanders inserted under her skin and filled with saline--they had to be refilled every week for four months. Despite all this, Martinez was determined to stay in shape, and to keep pushing towards her dream of sharing her knowledge of fitness and flexibility with others. Over the next several years, she shared her recovery online and inspired those around her as she returned to her workouts and fitness training. 

    Martinez showed tremendous flexibility from the age of three, when she would put her head on the floor and flip her legs back and forth over it. Her mother was afraid she would hurt herself, so she enrolled Martinez in gymnastics. Martinez later went to ballet and martial arts classes. Homeless at the age of 19, Martinez began working in cabaret and dance bars, learning to pole dance. Ever eager for more training, she learned aerial silks, studying at the San Francisco Circus Center just weeks before her 2012 accident. Despite the tragedy, and the struggles she faces in her day to day life as a single mother, she pushed forward with the pursuit of her passion through her recovery.  As of this week, she is the proud owner of fitness studio The Buzz Fitness on Baxter Avenue.

    "It was extremely difficult to recover and then do all of this myself as a single mom, " said Martinez as she gestured towards the studio she spent months remodeling herself. "I did all the patchwork and painting myself, including the glow in the dark murals. It was really tough picking my kid up from school and having him run around the studio as I worked on it, but I did it. I'm proud of myself that I was able to overcome the tragedy and work with the program to become a business owner. I am just very grateful."

    Martinez acquired the studio after attending a Community Action Partnership program that offers micro business loans to aspiring entrepreneurs after they attend a series of classes. Martinez used the loan to open The Buzz Fitness, where she offers classes that mix her many skills to help people lose weight and build muscle tone. Her instruction is informed by an interesting mix of yoga, Pilates, barre, pole, and aerial silks in a studio full of black lights and lasers.  The black lights cause the aerial silks and wall murals at The Buzz Fitness to glow, while the lasers light up the dance pole room with a dazzling array of patterns. 

    Anyone interested in taking her classes may visit her website for more information or email her at thebuzzfitness@gmail.com.  

    Jessica Lynn's picture

    About Jessica Lynn

    Jessica Lynn has been writing for Louisville.com since fall of 2010 and has also been published in LEO, Velocity, Voice-Tribune and others after serving as Editor in Chief of The JCC student newspaper, The Quadrangle. She has also served as columnist or contributing writer to an array of online publications.

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