What Is Zumba?

Home & Family, Sports
on October 13, 2011

Not long ago, Latin dancer, choreographer and fitness instructor Alberto “Beto” Perez turned on his usual aerobics class music and heard nothing. In a lightning-fast, adaptive fashion, Perez turned to his personal music collection for help and retrieved a tape from his car. With his favorite upbeat Latin salsa and merengue tunes, he improvised an innovative, complete workout for his clients that he dubbed “Zumba” — and the rest is history.

Zumba is officially recognized. The Zumba Fitness program may be relatively new, but it is no flash-in-the-pan ineffectual bit of amusement. While the workout is always exciting and fun, the physical effect of Zumba is serious fitness business. The Aerobics and Fitness Association of America, IDEA Heath and Fitness Association and the American Council on Exercise all recognize Zumba as an accredited fitness program taught in gyms and studios worldwide.

Zumba is a party disguised as a workout. Zumba is fun. According to the official Zumba Fitness website, Zumba is touted as the original “fitness party.” It combines Latin rhythms and a love for music and dance, while throwing out the mindless counting of repetitions and mechanical muscle movements. This hot new type of workout is all about letting loose, getting happy and healthy, and having a good time.

Zumba has variety. One Zumba does not have to fit all. There are different types of Zumba classes. Each features the invigoration of Latin dance with a unique focus as well:

  • Zumba — The original class features Latin and world music and high-energy dancing that is designed to up the pep in your step.
  • Zumba Gold — This modified Zumba class is designed for older people or beginners or anyone who wants to ease into a fun fitness routine without overdoing it and getting too tired.
  • Zumba Toning — This form of Zumba class features body-sculpting exercises in the Zumba style.
  • Aqua Zumba — This water workout is known as the Zumba pool party, according to the official Zumba website. It’s a challenging water-based workout in the safe, joint-friendly environment of water.
  • Zumbatomic — Designed specifically for children ages 4 to 12, this fun fitness party increases self-confidence and coordination while boosting metabolism.
  • Zumba in the Circuit — This 30-minute workout is Latin flavored, high-energy and fun, and includes a circuit of body building, metabolism boosting exercises. Plus, it’s adaptable for all levels of fitness.