CEDAR FALLS — Fitness is more than a hobby for Ashley Maginnis, it’s a lifestyle.
At age 3, Maginnis began dance classes that carried on until her teen years when she began playing high school sports. She eventually received a college degree from Iowa State University in kinesiology, the scientific study of the mechanics of body movements.
Now she’s taken her knowledge and passion further with AMFstudio, a boutique group fitness studio at 2512 White Tail Drive in Cedar Falls.
“She just has the personality. She makes it fun to work out, and she brings energy every time,” said her husband, Austin Maginnis, who helps her run the business. “She’s very knowledgeable in the subject, always giving modifications and communicating what muscle areas they’re working on.”
AMFstudio made its debut in the Cedar Valley in 2016 on First Street in Cedar Falls, next to Subway, when Ashley was 25 years old. She began with 30 members. With only 1,000 square feet of space, her classes quickly reached maximum capacity and she had to turn people away.
“Luckily my husband is very much the business-minded person,” she said. “I was able to really focus on just producing a product, and doing my classes.”
Now Ashley has opened AMFstudio just down the road and has 6,000 square feet and nearly 150 clients. She’s able to offer bigger class sizes, and the space contains a gym as well.
Ashley teaches more than 20 classes per week, including barre, sculpt, kick, tabata training, circuits, dance cardio and more.
“You have to come to see … one of the biggest things is the energy,” she said. “I am right there in it, doing the class with them.”
Adding to the energy of the room is a disco ball and lighted mirrors that span a full wall.
“There’s this really awesome energy you would not think you could find at 5 a.m., and we do,” she said.
This summer she will start a new class called strollercise.
“As a new mama, I’ve learned how crucial it is to be able to get out of the house with your small child. Even better – if you can get out of the house and do something with them. Not only is this a great thing for your child, but a great way for you as a mama to get some socialization,” she wrote on her website, www.ashleymaginnisfitness.com.
Austin and Ashley have two children, a 2-month-old and a 3-year-old.
Austin said his wife’s clients keep coming back to her because of her vast knowledge and her passion for helping others.
“Follow her on social media, she’s out there promoting health and wellness on her own,” he said. “Her brick and mortar is here, but her outreach goes farther. She’s always willing to lend a helping hand.”
Ashley puts a new plan together for each class, never repeating the same routine.
“She has literally notebooks, and notebooks, and notebooks full,” Austin Maginnis said.
Seeing clients’ progress is worth the work, Ashley said.
“Seeing those people that come in and you can tell they’re nervous and scared … and seeing the look on their faces after class — they’re sweaty and they’re hot and they definitely worked out, but they kind of fell in love with that working out process,” she said. “That’s what I love, to get people to see that it’s not something you have to hate or dread, it’s something you can truly look forward to.”