If there is one thing you should know about me, it is that I am a constant ball of energy. Despite my exercise-induced allergic reactions, despite my chronic anemia, and despite my, ehrm, generous bust size, I love to be active. I work out every single day, with few exceptions. I run, do workouts at the gym, swim, play tennis, and, until recently, soccer. I also enjoy occasional group fitness classes, like yoga or step aerobics. But by far, the workout I find the most enjoyable is Zumba.
What the heck is Zumba, you ask? Read on:
What is Zumba?
Zumba is a dance party! More specifically, it’s an aerobic dance fitness class featuring music styles such as salsa, reggaeton, cumbia, merengue, cha-cha, soca, hip-hop, flamenco, and rumba. But it is so much fun, that the official Zumba marketing slogan is, “Ditch the Workout — Join the Party!”
How did Zumba start?
Zumba started as a mistake in the 1990’s by Columbian dancer and choreographer, Beto Perez, who forgot to bring his aerobics mixtape to a class he was leading. He ended up playing a cassette tape of Latin dance music he had in his car, and the world’s greatest fitness dance party was born. No one could resist swaying their hips and moving their feet to the infectious Latin rhythms. The movement spread, and now, Zumba is practiced by millions of people in more than 100 countries worldwide.
Who does Zumba?
Everyone! Zumba is not a dance instruction class. Whether you’ve had years of dance and fitness training, or whether you are a newbie with two left feet, you can jump into a Zumba class and have a great time getting in shape. Even though there is usually a big mirror at the front of the studio, people aren’t watching you to make sure you can swing your hips or shake your shoulders correctly. (Thank goodness, because I can’t twerk to save my life, hahaha!)
Is Zumba an effective workout?
Yes! In a forty-minute Zumba class, an average person can burn 350-650 calories. With Zumba’s high energy style and interval-style intensity fluctuations, it has been shown to burn more calories than a number of other group exercise classes, including step aerobics, indoor cycling, hooping, and cardio kickboxing. And just as important — Zumba is fun! The most effective workout is one that you will keep doing on a regular basis. Still not sure? The best way to find out is to throw on your sneakers and head to your nearest Zumba class. Don’t worry about not knowing the steps, because no one is watching. Come join the party!
My Zumba Playlist Favorites
Chantaje — Shakira
Shaky Shaky (Terremoto) — Daddy Yankee
Baila Esta Cumbia — Selena
Don’t Stop the Party — Pitbull, TJR
Moviendo Caderas — Yandel ft. Daddy Yankee