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Tenant Success StoriesNew Space Boosts Business for Jazzercise

A side passion flourishes into a franchise ownership for Wichita native Stephanie Kelley-Ruedy


What once was a simple pleasure and a way to relieve stress has flourished into a franchise ownership for Wichita native Stephanie Kelley-Ruedy.

Stephanie began taking classes at Jazzercise Wichita in 2012 as a way to maintain her physical health and get some added “me” time. She quickly fell in love with not only the style of the exercise classes but the social and mental benefits as well.

She tried other fitness strategies through the year, but each time always ended right back in a Jazzercise class.  Soon she took things up a notch and decided to become an instructor.

“Jazzercise is feel-good fitness and so much more,” Stephanie said. “I’ve heard it said that movement is medicine and that’s true.  It’s a preemptive boost for our aging bodies and a release of feel-good hormones for our mind. And the benefits go much deeper than that. The community is what sets Jazzercise apart. The people are genuine and passionate. We have multi-generation family members and people who’ve been members for 35 years.”


By 2021, Stephanie was ready for even more.

The former owner of the Wichita franchise was ready to sell, and Stephanie felt the natural next step for herself would be to buy the franchise, which she purchased in October 2021. With the lease at the original location expiring soon, Stephanie wanted to search for a new location that could provide extra amenities for members.

Occidental Management’s sales and leasing agent, Nick Flores, helped Stephanie and her tenant representative agents, Dave Brown and Laura Mormando of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, to find the 2,600-sq-ft space within Northwest Centre, which is at the busy intersection of 13th St. and Tyler Rd. With the high visibility of the new space and a grand re-opening in October, Stephanie immediately saw an increase in memberships.

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Stephanie said Nick and the Occidental team were very accessible and helpful throughout the leasing and build-out process.

“Nick showed me the space and had the vision to see what I couldn’t quite see at first,” added Stephanie. “He and the Occidental team helped me throughout the build-out process, which I knew nothing about. I appreciated their determination and support.”

Nick says given how much the world of fitness has changed, it was time for Jazzercise Wichita to update their space to better serve the needs for the fitness studio today.

“Brands that simply provide a place for exercise won’t survive like the ones that are able to build a community and a lifestyle around fitness, like Stephanie’s Jazzercise does,” said Nick. “The new boutique fitness model doesn’t work in any open retail box in any old building. Stephanie has built a custom home for her fitness community in a vibrant neighborhood center. The ability for members to walk to lunch after class or meet for coffee beforehand is key to building her repeat business, which will be with her through the ups and downs of market cycles.”

Jazzercise Wichita is part of the global Jazzercise business, which has more than 8,300 franchises in 32 countries. A variety of membership options are available, including unlimited in-studio and online workouts. In addition, memberships can be utilized in other cities and franchises.

Peggy Glanzer has been a Jazzercise member since 1983 and has attended Wichita classes since 2008. She enjoys the physical aspects as well as the camaraderie.

“It’s very addicting and a fun way to exercise,” said Peggy. “I do it for that, but I also do it because of the people. Everyone is so inviting, and Stephanie is such an integral part of that. I also love that when I travel, I can attend classes at other franchises.”

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The new location better serves the needs of the fitness studio of today.

Jazzercise Wichita offers 26 classes a week, ranging from 30-60 minutes in a variety of formats, including dance aerobics, HiiT, weight and resistance training, and stretching classes. Jazzercise is ever-evolving and continually adding new formats to stay relevant within the fitness industry.

“It takes a village to start a new business,” added Stephanie. “So, my advice to other new business owners would be to gather people successful in their field to guide, assist and be a support structure. Wichita is a very community-driven city, and Occidental Management was one of my resources.

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So, what’s next for Stephanie?

“We are the only Jazzercise location in Wichita, and I would love to expand.”

You can support Jazzercise Wichita at 8404 W. 13th St. North, Suite 170. Full class details can be found on their website at https://www.jazzercise.com/location/jazzercise-wichita-nw-center.

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