Zumba is a new Latin-inspired fitness program. The aerobics style of exercise, carried out to upbeat Latin music, results in an intense cardiovascular workout (Bedinghaus). Zumba is described as an “exhilarating, effective, easy-to-follow, Latin-inspired, calorie-burning dance fitness party that’s moving millions of people toward joy and health” (Zumba fitness). Zumba is a fun alternative to the normal drudgery of working out. Just imagine: instead of running in place for an hour on a stationary treadmill, watching the clock slowly tick past, anticipating the moment you can jump off triumphantly and stagger to the water fountain, you could be shaking it up in an aerobics inspired dance workout with your friends where you watch the clock, not to see how much longer you have to endure, but to see when the party has to end.
Health Benefits of Zumba:
Besides being a fun fitness workout, there are many health benefits to Zumba. Zumba works out and tones your entire body instead of just focusing on a specific muscle group (Leong). Zumba is also good for weight loss as the aerobics routines keep you moving and burning calories for the entire class, which typically lasts about an hour (Bedinghaus). Zumba is not necessarily just for those looking to get fit or lose weight; it is also an effective stress reliever. Immersing yourself in the music and routines will help you to let your worries go and as a result you will be able to come away from the class feeling energized and refreshed. The dance routines also help tone your core abdominal muscles which lowers your risk of back pain (Leong).
There are six different types of Zumba classes:
- Zumba – a basic class featuring dance routines set to Latin music
- Zumba Gold – targets older participants and is modified to suit them better than the basic class
- Zumba Toning – is aimed at body sculpting. Participants use Toning Sticks to tone arms, abs and thighs.
- Aqua Zumba – is a water-based form of Zumba
- Zumbatomic – targets kids aged four to 12. It uses kid-friendly routines to encourage children to stay active. It also gives parents an option for their kids while they work out themselves.
- Zumba in the Circuit – an intense 30 minutes consisting of dance routines combined with strength exercises
Zumba DVDs and Video Games:
For those who do not feel comfortable going to Zumba classes or who do not have easy access to them, there are other options available. There are numerous Zumba DVDs that come in a range of different fitness levels.The workouts are much like the class-based workouts, burning around 1000 calories an hour (Zumba DVDs). There is also a video game, Zumba Fitness, available for Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360 or Playstation 3. It offers 30-minute dance routines that can help you get fit or lose weight without even leaving your house (Zumba Video).
- Bedinghaus, Treva. “Zumba – All About Zumba.” About Dance – Learn to Dance – Dance Steps and Tips – Ballet and Jazz Dance. Web. 26 Feb. 2011.
- Leong, Kristie. “The Health Benefits of Zumba Dance.” Healthmad. Web. 26 Feb. 2011.
- Zumba DVDs – Your Complete Zumba Fitness DVD Guide. Web. 26 Feb. 2011.
- “Zumba fitness.” Zumba® — Ditch the Workout, Join the Party! Web. 26 Feb. 2011.
- “Zumba Video Game.” Zumba Video Workout. Web. 26 Feb. 2011.