The word Zumba is derived from the Columbian words 'fast and fun'. Zumba is a whole body experience, a dance workout routine that incorporates various movements and focuses on allowing the music to move you rather than counting and repetitions. Drawing inspiration from salsa music, Alberto 'Beto' Pere, an aerobics instructor put together the zumba workout. Once when he missed his tapes for a scheduled aerobics class, he combined salsa and meringue music and put together a fun way to work out.
A zumba workout session lasts for about an hour. Slow and fast rhythm music is used for the workout. Zumba is very popular because the tempo and the rhythm of the music and the workout keep changing constantly.
Warm-up and warm down of the muscles are part of the exercise schedule. Stretches mark the start of the exercises, loosening all the muscles. The greatest advantage is that all muscles across the body are stretched and worked out during Zumba workout. For your Zumba workout:
- Wear comfortable clothing
- Wear a comfortable pair of shoes
- Carry a towel as you will sweat a lot
- Carry enough water
- Be prepared to have loads of fun
Choose shoes that support side-to-side dance movements and pivots. Go in for a thin-soled pair. Tank up on your hydration. And most importantly, just let yourself go. Zumba is about having a good time, about moving your body and dancing your way to fitness!
Verbal instructions find no place in a Zumba class; just follow the movement of the instructor. The instructor leads the class through:
- Interval training
- Fast tempo movement for cardio workout
- Slow tempo movement to stretch body muscles
- Warm down
With most muscle groups put into action, your metabolism is revved up. Remember to keep your stomach muscles pulled in during your Zumba exercises. Keep mixing up your dance routine so that your body is forced to adjust to new crunches and moves.
Zumba allows you the flexibility of changing your interval timings to suit your level of cardio fitness. Confuse your body by increasing or decreasing your move timings. And you will see how it works for you!
With a regular dose of cardio in your Zumba class, the entire body gets a workout. Your heart is pumping to the exciting beats and your feet are keeping pace – Little wonder that you tone up and burn calories too.
Zumba is safe for people from all ages as it is a low-impact exercise. However based on the age and exertion levels, you can go in for various Zumba workouts like Aqua Zumba or Zumba toning or even circuit Zumba.
Zumba helps you stay in shape as you lose 450 - 600 calories per session. Zumba combines resistance training and cardio interval training. The easy-to-follow and fun dance moves take the tedium out of exercising. You end up feeling really good!
Don't push yourself too hard. After all you are there to enjoy your workout. A Zumba session feels more like a dance party and less a workout. The pulsating music, the energy of the participants and the exhilarating feeling all add to pepping up your mood!