Life's a Party!
Zumba®: ditch the workout and join the party!
You may have heard about the Zumba® buzz that’s been in the air these past few years and wondered what it’s really all about. Zumba® is a combination of salsa, merengue, cumbia, reggaeton, Arabian rhythms, country, samba, cha-cha-cha, belly dance, martial arts, and hip-hop.
I first stumbled across this “dance party” nearly three years ago as I was recovering from shoulder surgery. One day, as I sat icing my weak shoulder after a grueling therapy session, I happened to catch a glimpse of the Zumba® class that was taking place right next door. I watched as these women danced and laughed their way across the room. As soon as I got the OK, I signed up for my first class and I’ve been hooked ever since.
Now trust me, I’m no dancer. My dance style is more Elaine Benes from Seinfeld and less Darci Kistler, former principle dancer of the New York City ballet. I go left and they go right! It took a few classes for me to catch on, but once I got a few of the basic moves down I was able to keep up. There was energy in the room that I’d never experienced before; it was truly electric!
The physical as well as the psychological benefits of any type of dance have been well documented. Because Zumba® is such a dynamic workout, you can potentially burn close to 1,000 calories in an hour. This all depends, however, on various factors such as your age, weight and fitness level – and how far you push yourself. Because Zumba places mild stress on bone and joints, strengthening them both, you will see improved bone and joint health which can aid in the prevention of osteoporosis. Zumba® is also an incredible stress release: Let your mind follow the instructor and your body follow the music. You will walk away feeling energized, refreshed and renewed!
As with any exercise program, you can modify your activity to suit your needs. You, and only you, are in control of your own body and how it moves. If it feels wrong, don’t do it, but don’t use your limitations as an excuse not to exercise! There are plenty of women in my group with bad knees, backs, shoulders and necks. The important thing is to be cognizant of your body and what it’s telling you.
My love for Zumba® is two-fold. I love the way I feel afterwards. I feel energized and ready to tackle the day. I love the friendships that have developed in my own group, as we’ve gotten to know each other over the years. We’ve become comfortable in our skin. We’ve become stronger, more confident, and dare I say, even sexier! The women who belong to my particular dance studio range in age from 14 to 72. So, what are you waiting for? There’s no excuse!
1499 Post Road
112 Main Street
203 286 8608
New England Academy of Dance
231 Main Street
New Canaan, CT
Work It Dance and Fitness
119 North Main Street,