Meet our Family

Gina Velazquez

Owner of Ignite

Gina Velazquez is a forever soul searcher, coffee enthusiast and lover of all things DANCE .  As a mother of 3 amazing kids, She dedicated it all to them but was ready to do something for her. It was seven years ago  when she woke up one morning and realized she didn’t recognize the girl in the mirror and at THAT point her soul journey began. 

 

One day a friend had asked her to take a Zumba class, but Gina hesitatingly said yes because in her head, dancers didn’t do Zumba! But This was more than just Zumba - it brought this stay at home mom back to life.  It reignited her passion for dance, made her realize how important her “me time’ is, and introduced her to a tribe of women she never even knew she needed. 

 

Soon, merely taking classes was not enough.  Gina became Zumba licensed in 2015, certified in the Vixen Workout in 2017, and Fly Girl certified in 2020.  She got back to her passion full time and realized her “fire” was about so much more than just dance.  It was about the community; the connection with the other women and men on the dance floor.  The warm “hello’s” and exchanges, the sweaty smiles and the “HEY’S”. 

 

Gina took her passion and opened  IGNITE Mind Body Soul in March of 2020.  Her vision is to provide a judgement free Dance Floor that men and women of all skill levels can come and let it all go.  It’s so much more than dance and fitness, it’s about the marriage of your Mind Body and Soul. 

Frankie Perez 

Partner & DJ at Ignite

Frankie Perez is the other important piece of Ignite.  He is a natural born entertainer, DJ Emcee and proud owner of One of A Kind Events. .  Frankie is extremely passionate about what he does and is known to be one of the most dynamic and dedicated entertainers due to his passion, attention to detail and commitment to reading the crowd.   

When not working events, he trains as a professional Mixed Martial Arts fighter.  At 22 years old he made his professional MMA debut and in 2015 he made his UFC debut.  Frankie came from a small town in NJ and always had a vision of doing more with himself,.  HIs Mixed Martial Arts training from his teenage years is what contributed to molding him in to the powerhouse he is today.  

 

Frankie has taken that training combined with his entertainment background and put his passion now into Ignite.  When he is not DJ’ing classes to add that fire to the dance floor, he is teaching a HIIT workout to our clients and keeping everyone positive and smiling. 

 

Ignite would not be what it is today without the commitment of Frankie and his collaborative partnership with Gina.  

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Krista Nelson Warenkiewicz

Dance & Fitness Instructor

Krista started her dance career at age 4.  She is classically trained in ballet, jazz, tap and musical theatre, minoring in dance in college.  She has performed in many dance ensembles and has been teaching dance for the last 12 yrs.  In 2008 she got certified by Tanya Beardsley to teach Zumba which has been a huge drive and passion for her.  She started taking Barre classes in 2018 and absolutely became addicted to the workout.  She has subbed many Barre classes and got certified through ABT to teach the Barre technique.  Her background in ballet and dance has helped her develop a fun, creative and safe Barre class.  But out of all her accomplishments, her 3 amazing daughters are her favorite and her biggest motivators.

Miriam Sokol

Dance & Fitness Instructor

Dancing is Miriam’s Happy Place since she was a young girl. For the last 12 years Zumba has played a huge part in her day-to-day life. As well as it being her number one workout choice, it was also her therapy from the stresses of daily life. Miriam is a professional make up artist and a mom of three and puts love and passion into everything she does. Miriam took her passion for dance and became certified as a Zumba instructor four years ago. 

She is famously known for her infectious smile and energy that she brings to her Zumba classes and anywhere she goes and she looks forward to sharing her Happy Place with You. 

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Melissa Brown

Dance & Fitness Instructor

Melissa has been studying the art of dance since the young age of 3 years old.  At age fourteen Melissa received her first Professional job starring as a dancer on the show “I am a Celebrity”. This opportunity started Melissa’s successful career. She has performed on Broadway and with several record labels.  At the end of Melissa’s professional career as a performer she continued to educate aspiring dancers throughout the tri-state area, which ultimately became her main focus along with marrying her love for fitness and dance.  Melissa moved to Ocean County with her husband back in 2012 and opened a successful dance and fitness studio, offering classes such as dance, dance fitness, Zumba, Pilates, barre, yoga, boot camp and more.  After enduring several injuries from years of dance and fitness Melissa suffered from severe shin splints, stress fractures and eventually under went a cervical spinal fusion.  She was told that she may not be able to teach dance/fitness the same ever again.  Melissa made it her goal to defeat that prognoses and after months of physical therapy she got back into training her competitive Dance Company that she has now owned for the past 7 years and is also a Co-Founder and director of RISE Talent Convention. 

"If I can inspire just one person through movement, then I feel I have accomplished what I am meant to do”.

Jackie Shaheed

Dance & Fitness Instructor

Hello! I'm Jackie Shaheed, and I live in Howell, NJ and I am a proud member of the Ignite family. I've been a Zumba™ Instructor since Jan 2009 and I absolutely love teaching Zumba classes. The reason is simple: Every class feels like a party!  I am also a Health Coach and Personal Trainer and passionate about helping people meet their wellness goals. I have been on a weight loss journey for many years and have lost over 150 pounds and been featured on Oprah, Rachel Ray and the Today Show.  You can learn more about my journey here - Jackieshealthjourney | Instagram, YouTube | Linktree.  Follow me on my instagram account at @making_myway_wwback.  I can't wait to meet you soon at my happy place!

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Louis Delgado 

Dance & Fitness Instructor

I have been in the fitness instructor for 12 years and loved every minute of it!!!! My love had always been people. Getting people to their goals and watching them flourish in life has been my joy. My goal is to not only get your body where you want it to be, but your mind where it needs it to be. I can't promise you it will be easy, I can't promise you it will be quick, but I can promise you I will never give up on you! 

Karen Uzzolino

Studio "mom"ager

Karen is our studio “MOM-ager”!  She takes care of all things Ignite ... Ignite people, places, and things.  Karen is the mirror we all sometimes need to look into to see who we truly are, She reminds us daily and will always greet you with a warm welcoming smile.

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