CREATOR OF OLEFIT, A NEW FITNESS TREND
Passionate about flamenco
We spoke with Paloma Gómez, en Denver, a few days after she finished her tour in Japan. She visited the Asian country to promote “Olefit”, a new fitness discipline that she crated. Her passion for flamenco comes in her blood, since her parents were dancers. She was part of the National Ballet of Spain for a decade. After a long artistic career as a dancer and choreographer, she continues to travel the world to show her talent in Spanish dance and to promote the expansion of Olefit.
Paloma Gómez was born, by coincidence, in Malaga, a coastal city in Southern Spain. Her parents had arrived there to fulfil work commitments. “My father was a flamenco dancer and my mother was a Spanish dancer,” narrated Paloma. She grew up traveling with her parents throughout Spain as they fulfilled their artistic commitments. When she was of school age, her family decided to settle down in Madrid, where they were originally from.
“When the time came, my parents founded a dance school in Madrid. I grew up there, seeing the classes my parents were teaching and eventually participating in them. Many of my schoolmates were also students of the dance school, as I was,” she remembered. Those familiar and personal ties helped shape her vocation. “When I was 11, I thought I could become a dancer,” said Paloma. That decision took her to travel the difficult road of being formed as a dancer, while pursuing her regular schooling.
Paloma saw the fruits of her efforts. When she turned 17, she was chosen to be a part of the prestigious National Ballet of Spain. She spent a decade there and had the opportunity to share the stage with the most important dancers in Spain. Later she became principal dancer at some of the most important dance companies in Spain. Throughout her career of 30 years, Paloma has been recognized as a dancer and choreographer. She continues to travel the world for shows with international dance companies and to teach master classes.
“I have taught and spoken at many conferences. Many of those who come to see me, don’t necessarily want to become professional flamenco dancers, but love the flamenco art. At one of those classes, some of the students said they found flamenco difficult, but that they greatly enjoyed it,” she remembered. That conversation took place in 2014 in Chicago, at the Northeastern Illinois University, after an intense flamenco class. That day, Paloma and Luis Lorente, her late husband, came up with the idea of creating a modality of fitness using flamenco beats.
That is when the concept of Olefit comes to life. To achieve that goal, Paloma had to travel a different road of what she was used to. “We had the idea of creating a new modality of fitness, based on flamenco. To think about launching a project like this made us be rigorous and consult with experts in the area,” she said. From the beginning, Paloma enrolled the help of John Vigdal, a Norwegian fitness professional expert and consultant.
Little by little, during the past 5 years, her project has been taking shape. “In 2019 we will have more than 1,500 fitness centers throughout the world offering Olefit classes and more than 80 thousand people will be practicing it,” said paloma. Olefit is present in three of the five continents. In Europe, Olefit is in Spain, England, Belgium and Sweden. It will soon be in France. In the U.S. there are places offering it in Chicago, Denver and another 7 cities. Meanwhile, Peru, Mexico and Colombia are some of the countries in Latin America that are familiar with this discipline.
Paloma is proud of the progress Olefit has made in the vast Asian continent. There are Olefit instructors in Saudi Arabia, Singapore and Japan. “We just returned from a fruitful tour in Japan where we saw many of our master classes sold out,” said Paloma. Olefit is offered at 30 locations of ‘Reinassance,” the largest network of gyms in Japan. Paloma announced that Olefit will be coming soon to South Korea and Vietnam. Then, the next stop is Australia.
Paloma Gómez creator of ‘Olefit’, a fitness discipline with flamenco rhythms.
What is ‘Olefit’?
Olefit is a mainly aerobic fitness training that works on muscle tone and coordination which can help you lose weight. Inspired by flamenco, an Olefit class offers an energetic, fun and therapeutic experience that helps release the most intense emotions in the same way as its music does. This new fitness trend feeds from the most festive rhythms of flamenco such as the rumbas, bulerias and flamenco tangos. This is the Spanish contribution to the world of fitness. It is practiced with percussion, ‘palmas’ and ‘zapateados’.
“This is not a flamenco class,” said Paloma Gómez, creator of Olefit. She added, “this discipline, with a flamenco rhythm, is good to burn calories and it is favorable for the mental and emotional health. It can be practiced by people of any age and without a background in dance. All they need is the intention to have fun, enjoy the flamenco rhythms without prejudice and to improve their quality of life with physical movement in a safe and effective way.”
Olefit in Denver
In Denver, Olefit is available on Saturdays from 10am to 11am at Maria Vazquez’s Flamenco Denver dance school. “We are in the process of opening an additional class on Mondays at 9am, given the interest this discipline has caused in the community. These are group fitness classes and all you need is to bring comfortable clothing and sport shoes,” said Maria, who is also an accomplished flamenco dancer and a certified instructor for Olefit.
Olefit at Flamenco Denver
Maria Vazquez – Flamenco Denver
1934 S Broadway
Denver, CO 80210