WERQ & PLAY

NORTH SHORE FIT­NESS PRO HA­LEY STONE TAKES HER DANCE FIT­NESS PHE­NOM­E­NON WERQ TO THE NEXT LEVEL.

Michigan Avenue - - CONTENTS - BY GWEN­DOLYN PURDOM

North Shore fit­ness pro Ha­ley Stone takes her dance fit­ness phe­nom­e­non WERQ to the next level.

Teach­ing fit­ness classes had long been a “side hus­tle” for Ha­ley Stone. But when car­dio dance videos that the Glen­coe res­i­dent up­loaded to Youtube gar­nered more than a mil­lion views, Stone— then still work­ing full-time at the En­vi­ron­men­tal Pro­tec­tion Agency—knew she was onto some­thing big­ger, and WERQ was born. Five years later, the mother of two’s pop-and-hip-hop-cen­tric pro­gram has be­come a fit­ness sen­sa­tion, with classes taught in 36 states by more than 1,000 in­struc­tors—and grow­ing.

What makes it WERQ: Mix­ing chart­ing hits with repet­i­tive chore­og­ra­phy lets new­bies feel com­fort­able and free to let loose. “[We] re­ally just fo­cus on the fun of it, be­cause when it’s fun, the calo­ries fol­low,” says Stone. All in the fam­ily: Im­promptu predin­ner dance par­ties are a reg­u­lar oc­cur­rence for Stone, her phys­i­cal ther­a­pist hus­band, and their two young daugh­ters. Go-to gymwear: A de­voted “fit­ness chic” fan, Stone can’t live with­out her mus­cle tees, Lu­l­ule­mon leg­gings, or Vic­to­ria’s Se­cret sports bras. Mark your cal­en­dar: Stone’s #Getlifted Fit­ness Fes­ti­val re­turns to Chicago for its sec­ond an­nual gath­er­ing in Septem­ber. Cur­rent jam: Any rou­tine set to a Bruno Mars song is guar­an­teed to get classes mov­ing, but “Perm” holds the fa­vorite ti­tle for now. Dream pupils: “If Ri­hanna and Drake were to show up, I would have a melt­down.” werq­fit­ness.com

“IT’S NOT ABOUT CALO­RIES OR SIX-PACKS. WHEN PEO­PLE COME TO WERQ, THEY CAN CUT LOOSE AND ROLE PLAY. THEY CAN BE BEY­ONCÉ.” —HA­LEY STONE

Dance dance rev­o­lu­tion: Once an EPA spe­cial­ist, lo­cal fit­ness guru and WERQ founder Ha­ley Stone (ƭƨʃ ƫƣơơƭ) now heads a car­dio dance move­ment all over Chicago— plus hun­dreds of other cities across 36 states.

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