Aug 26, 2016

Albuquerque Strength and Conditioning Clinic

Hello SW colleagues and friends!

Please join us Sept. 10 for the annual "Albuquerque Strength and Conditioning Clinic" featuring top a local fitness and wellness professionals.

UNM Students: Mention "Megan Merchant" when registering and the late fee will be waived, only $30 for a FULL DAY convention: priceless education and networking!

For full information and to register:
Contact Kenny Croxdale at 505-363-3032 or

All proceeds are donated to the Greater Albuquerque Jewish Community Center.

Megan Merchant

Jul 4, 2016

Miami 2016 LaBlast Convention Highlights

Master trainers ready for a day of "Turn It Up" training and our first convention demos.

LaBlast Master Trainers receiving our official LaBlast jackets after our demos.
Thank you, Louis and LaBlast!!!

LaBlast LINE DANCE format revealed by Louis beside the beach: beautiful night!

After line dancing, CAKE CAKE CAKE!!!

One of the amazing LaBlast Pros, MaryBeth Rainey Castell (Ohio)

LaBlast Pro and beautiful soul Stephanie de Ortiz (CA)

Texas LaBlast Instructor and excellent Salsa partner, Alberto Ojeda

Hanging with East Coast LaBlast Pros Mandy Kuhn, Annie Hill, and Megan Cooperman

Louis' LaBlast SPLASH demo; poolside with LaBlast Pro Nic Perkins (CA)

Master Trainers at Louis' Birthday Bash and Awards Night

SE LaBlast Pro and "Comedian of the Year" William Mastriani

INTERNATIONAL!  Austrian LaBlast Pro Pierre Gider

"All About LaBlast" Serenade for Louis, created by Ohio LaBlast Pro Rebecca Chacko and support from Dana Corbet Tobias and myself: SO FUN!!
Shout out to LaBlast Pro Josh on the right: we love you and all you do!

Well-earned rest by our hard-working boss.
Nothing but love!  And maybe a little team mischief... ;D

Inspire your life and try LaBlast at home TODAY 
with the new online classes led by Louis Van Amstel

OR Join me LIVE, meet new friends, and let's create events for your area!

May 16, 2016

A LaBlast Moment with Gabriela

Here is a moment from one of my wonderful UNM Aerobic Dance students (featuring LaBlast Fitness curriculum), who after only a few short weeks of class attended our April 18-19 "UNM Dance Fitness Clinic" with LaBlast creator Louis van Amstel.  

Check out their glow after ONE HOUR of dancing!

Gabriela's heart-felt and super fun account below of her experience with LaBlast, the partner-free fitness program that teaches you authentic dance, just had to be shared.  

Thank you, Gabriela!

On Saturday April 30th, I had the honor of attending Omega Delta Phi’s (ODPhi) 15th annual formal. ODPhi formal is unlike any other fraternity formal that I’ve been to because it is a multicultural fraternity, meaning it is rich in culture and proud of its heritage. The first part of the formal had some speeches from the seniors. Then one of the founding members of the New Mexico came up and spoke about how he founded the UNM chapter of ODPhi. After awards and a nice slide show, the real fun began. The dj played and we all danced.
            When salsa, samba, and cha-cha songs came on, I was able to use the moves from class to dance the entire night. I was even able to do some partner dancing, and each gentleman was really impressed with my dancing skills. Some were even shocked that I knew the steps and could do them so confidently. Once people caught on that I knew the steps, they taught me even more moves to add.
    This is when I realized how much dance plays a roll in our lives. It is something that unifies people of different cultures, and who don’t speak each other’s oral language. I am a big lover of music and dancing, but knowing the moves makes all the difference. Knowing the steps gives me a new confidence in myself. I ended up dancing for almost three hours non-stop to Latin American music, and I had the absolute time of my life. Talk about a cardio work out!  I am looking forward to showing off my moves at every opportunity I get. 

Keep up the wonderful dancing, Gabriela!  
We are so honored LaBlast enhanced your life: AWESOME!!!

YOU can join in and experience LaBlast: Watch for events with Megan here or message me!

May 12, 2016

UNM Fall 2016: "LaBlast" is Official and "PA and Aging" is back!

LaBlast Fitness joins the UNM PE Activity Program roster of classes for students and staff Fall 2016!

Register now and mark your calendars: it will be a BLAST!
Questions? Email me at
To join me for more events, see what is coming up here!

Apr 11, 2016

Blasting Dance Myths: Sex, Drinking, and... Exercise?

The following are popular social dances myths and the reasons you can set them free.

1. Myth 1 and 2: "You need a romantic partner to dance and be wary: social dancing leads to sexual encounters."

As I learned from Pro Dancer and Educator Louis Van Amstel, social dance is sensual, not necessarily sexual.  Like enjoying a piece of chocolate or a hot shower, dancing allows you to fully enjoy your body, elevate your emotions, and... those can lead to enjoyable thoughts.  

But there was time in our history where EVERYBODY in a community danced: grandparents, kids, coworkers, neighbors.  All ages, all abilities, all kinds of dance styles.  And they danced with joy together and often to celebrate accomplishments, community, love, life, and laughter.  This is the social dance we are bringing back and we enjoy most!

Our LaBlast crew playing up our sensuality on the beach in Mexico. Ole!

2. Myth 3: Where there is social dancing, there is social drinking.

Another phase of history, drinking alcohol used to be a clean method of drinking water when water was contaminated (think Cholera Era).  But water has been drinkable for a very, very, very long time and thankfully it hydrates rather than depletes you like alcohol.  

The more you dance in a relaxed and upbeat manner, the more your body and mind will crave water.  If you feel nervous and tense before dancing, this is the time to breath, reach for a friend, and request your favorite song.

Did you know that 1 of 20 people are missing an enzyme to break down alcohol?  Some populations have genetics that cause them to be immediately ill, some are immediately addicted, and some can drink with no consequence, but very few.  If you are a lucky one who can moderately drink and be merry, consider yourself doubly blessed to be surrounded by hydrated friends. :D

Dancing from 8 AM to midnight but at 2 AM in Beverly Hills:
hydrated and still going strong!
3. Myth 4: "Dance is exercise."

Exercise is a term that simply means "physical activity that is structured, planned, and repeated."

THE BEST NEWS is you only need ten to thirty minutes every day, that's moving wholeheartedly to two to five of your FAVORITE songs, to turn your rare maybe-at-a-wedding-or-graduation-social-dancing into weekly weight loss, strengthening, flexibility, grace, pose, and healthy heart outcomes.

We LOVE this type of exercise!

Sharing LaBlast Fitness in UNM Beginning Ballroom


Ages 13 to 100+, no experience welcome!