Houston Forward Times

04 June 2014 Written by  Jeffrey L. Boney

Houston’s Own Tammy Harris Wins Live with Kelly & Michael ‘Top Fitness Instructor’ Contest

tammy harris gym headshot

The city of Houston has something to be cheer about as one of its own, Tammy Harris, was chosen as the winner of the first-ever "LIVE’s Top Fitness Instructor" contest on the "LIVE with Kelly and Michael" show.

Show hosts Kelly Ripa and Texas Southern University’s own Michael Strahan announced Harris the winner this past Monday morning. Harris got the opportunity to showcase her moves in front of the national audience because she was nominated by her students.

"LIVE" partnered with Emergen-C® for "Top Fitness Instructor Week," during which the top five finalists traveled to New York and demonstrated their routines on "LIVE." After the last finalist was showcased, "LIVE’s" viewers voted for Harris as the overall grand prize winner of $10,000 in cash. Each finalist took home a $2,000 cash prize, and all five will be featured in a future issue of Fitness Magazine.

Harris, who is a dancer at heart, is a former member of the Houston Rockets Power Dancer cheerleading squad and has over 25 years of extensive dance training under her belt. She is certified as a personal trainer by the Aerobics Fitness Association of America, and launched her own company, Soul Grooves, LLC, with the motto "Health and Wellness is a way of LIFE."

With popular exercise movements such as Insanity, Zumba, and CrossFit gaining notoriety, Harris knew that she would have to create a unique cardio workout in order to stay competitive in the market, so creating ‘Soul Grooves’ gave her the opportunity to be a cheerleader, fitness instructor and inspirational speaker rolled into one.

Soul Grooves is a cardio dance workout that enables people to get fit, feel healthier all while enjoying the time of their life. It involves varied choreographed cardio dance routines that inspire you to get fit while feeding your mind, body and soul. Soul Grooves is considered a motivating alternative to a regular fitness routine because it keeps people moving, inspired and in an upbeat and positive frame of mind as they reach their fitness and personal goals.

Typically in the group fitness industry, a large class is considered 50 people. Soul Grooves workouts bring in more than 200 participants. Her classes are held at three different Life Time Fitness locations across Houston, every Monday through Saturday. Harris said that at her ‘Soul Grooves’ classes, it’s not uncommon to see participants of all different ethnicities, ages, genders, and fitness levels getting a much-needed and fun workout.

"We are a Top 40 class," says Harris. "We have a library that consists of more than 200 routines, so our workouts are innovative and exciting. We workout to pop, rock, R&B, country or anything that is on the Top 40 list. It’s a very easy-to-follow class."

Prior to becoming a successful fitness instructor, Harris struggled with her own weight challenges, which prompted her to develop Soul Grooves in order to stress the importance of fitness, nutrition and behavioral changes to achieve physical and psychological goals.

When Harris is not training others, she spends time with her family, traveling and working with charities. Be sure to visit the ‘Soul Grooves’ website at www.soulgrooves.com.