Affordable fitness fun in the Twin Cities

Photo by Lindsay Henwood on Unsplash

January is usually the time of year where most people begin making new goals regarding health, fitness, career, love, and fun. But not everyone wants or can afford to purchase a gym membership. Besides finances, getting to the gym can be a chore, especially if your workout facility is not in your neighborhood.

It is completely possible to get fit, meet new people, and set new goals right in the heart of the city. And by meeting up and working out with people in your own community and neighborhood, you may even find an accountability partner or a life partner.

North Minneapolis, in particular, has many places to go to enjoy free or donation-based fitness classes. Below is a short list of workout and fitness options in the community. If you know of more opportunities, please let us know in the comment section.

Harris “Da Line Man” Parks

Harris Parks (left) leading Sister Spokesman attendees at “Making Fitness Fun” on Jan. 6. (Olivia Crutchfield/MSR News)

Last seen at Sister Spokesman “Making Fitness Fun” event on Jan. 6, Harris “Da Line Man” Parks of “We Are Family” Soul Line Dance Group encourages people to exercise to better their “body, mind and spirit.” He’s been line dancing for seven years and has taught for three. Below are the times of his classes:

  • Mondays, 12-1 pm at NorthPoint Health & Wellness Center, 1313 Penn Avenue North, Minneapolis
  • Mondays, 4-6 pm: 4-5 pm for beginners; 5-6 pm for intermediate at Center of Performing Arts, 3754 Pleasant Avenue, Minneapolis
  • Sundays, 4-6 pm at Center of Performing Arts. The class for beginners is from 4-5 pm and intermediate from 5-6 pm.

Each class is $5 and for both classes are just $7!

Angela Spearman

Angela Spearman (Courtesy of Facebook/Angela Spearman)

Spearman teaches a low-impact, high energy group fitness class at Nellie Stone Johnson Community School in North Minneapolis.  Spearman says to value your health as it’s a blessing “that money cannot buy.” Classes are free and equipment is provided. Childcare is also provided. Participants must be at least 16. For more information about her classes, contact her at

Below are Spearman’s classes:

  • Tuesdays and Thursday from 6:15-7:15 pm at Nellie Stone Johnson Elementary, 807 N 27th Avenue Minneapolis
  • In the summer, Spearman hosts a walking class at Theodore Wirth Park, Tuesdays, and Thursdays from 6:15-7:15 pm

Valerie “I Am Zumba” Fleurantin

Attendees enjoyed a Zumba demonstration led by Val Turner Paige Elliott/MSR News

Val ”I am Zumba” Turner is one-half of the dynamic Noir Elite Fitness. She teaches free Zumba classes in the community with the motto, “Love yourself enough to live a healthy and fit lifestyle!” You can reach her at or on Facebook for more information.

Below are Turner’s class times:

  • Mondays and Fridays at 6 pm at the Minneapolis Urban League, 2100 Plymouth Avenue North in Minneapolis. The classes are sponsored by North Point Health and Wellness
  • Tuesdays at 7:30 pm – Bootcamp/Core at the North Market, 4414 Humboldt Avenue North in Minneapolis
  • Thursdays at 8 am, Zumba-Afrobeats at North Market
  • Thursdays 12 pm BootCamp – 12:45 pm at North Market
  • Every 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month, Meal Prep at 1 pm at North Market

Tammie Richardson

Tammie Richardson (Photo courtesy of Tammie Richardson

Tammie “Get Fit 4 Life”! Richardson teaches a cardio class she calls “RIPPED.” She explains, “It’s a high-intensity cardio class which is designed to help you burn calories. I also teach abs, hips buns and thighs. [This class is] to help sculpture those areas of your body.”

Her words of wisdom: “I also encourage everybody to eat healthy and not to diet. Diets fail us, and we fail them. Learn how to eat healthy and you will get strength, lose the weight, and become a healthier you. Also, take care of the wellness part of yourself [and] focus on the positive you. Get rid of the toxins from your mind and your heart and you can go far. I focus on mind, body, and spirit.”

Below are Richardson’s class times:

  • “Fit 4 Life” class meets Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 6-7 pm at North Commons, 1801 N James Avenue, Minneapolis
    For more information about her programs contact:

There are many more fitness instructors in the Twin Cities.  However, these women offer a diverse array of affordable classes to help you stay in shape over the winter months, and through the entire year.

Additionally, you can find Health & Fitness classes held through Minneapolis Community Education: or Minneapolis Parks & Recreation. Let us know about your favorite class in the comment section.


Brandi Phillips welcomes reader responses to