Zumba, Dancing made to lose weight and have fun doing so. I know many people have spoken on this dance wave that has people losing weight and giving them new moves to show off to their friends. It has become an ever so popular way of losing weight and having fun. Not to mention, I hear of a lot of people who say it has worked for them, this is a good thing obviously. I gave Zumba a try maybe a little less than a year ago due to a friend at the time asking me if I would try it with him. He had purchased the video set for at home workouts and told me that he enjoyed Zumba (but I normally do not rely on his opinion because it changes like the forecast) lol. At this time, I was beginning my journey in wanting to lose weight and so I thought it didn’t sound like a bad idea. I figured it would be safe inside his home for no one to see me look horrible why doing this, but in all honesty I am actually a really good dancer (was better when I was younger) so I didn’t have too much of a worry but I wasn’t all sure what to expect with the moves. He explained to me there were an abundance of different zumba songs with different dances and some were a little more challenging to keep up with at first but as you progressed it would get easier. I allowed him to choose the Zumba song and dance we would do first, I was feeling fairly gross that day in my workout clothes and half of my mind was obsessing with all the fat that covered my abdominal area and how wide I thought my hips were.. ect. Little did he know, thinking about all of this was going to interfere with how much effort I put into the dancing. The beginning was the instructor going over the moves one by one so that the audience could understand what was expected and could progress as we hit each movement together. I was grasping some moves more than others, but like I said my mind was more concerned with how I looked versus how well I was dancing and you would think that someone who danced such as myself would be able to do the dance with no issues, but I fumbled many times once we started to put everything together. My friend on the other hand was able to get all all the moves down with minimal issue and he didn’t even have dancing background. I suppose he was more focuses than I was. Nonetheless we did a dance for about 20-30 minutes, the last 15 minutes I was able to get about 80 percent of the moves down with hardly any difficulty. On to the main point, I wasn’t a HUGE fan of Zumba, not because I do not like dancing, because I LOVE dancing! but because it wasn’t something that interested me enough, maybe because it was just us two doing it, so I got bored or maybe because I wasn’t a fan of the dance moves or maybe it was because I was at a dark place with my body and couldn’t fight the urge in wanting to give up because I was uncomfortable dancing; it just didn’t excite me. Doesn’t mean I wouldn’t give it a go again (although I am not a fan of home workout videos, a post for the near future) so if I did try it again, I would to do a class with a larger group of people and I am at period now where I do like what I see in the mirror.
Anyhow I kinda wanted to go over the ins and outs of Zumba, maybe share some pros and cons.
- Cardiovascular workout – said to burn up to 470 calories for one hour of Zumba
- Said to help with mental health- helps to improve mental health because of it being a form of exercise, and it high impact aerobic exercise
- Group environment- able to meet new people, socialize and gives you a sense of motivation because you see others who are striving for success.
- Less likely to quit if you are having fun
- helps improve balance and coordination
- learning the movements and steps is good mental exercise
- It will build endurance and increase lung capacity because of it being fast paced.
- Might be difficult to learn the moves, if someone is impatient, they can get stressed out or frustrated
- Availability of classes- sometimes depending on where you live, it can be hard to find classes and even if you do have Zumba classes offered, sometimes they get filled up quick
- Having a bad instructor, you want someone who makes you feel comfortable dancing in front of them and someone who will help you when you need it
- Ask people their opinions on different instructors before you choose one, because this will make the difference between a good Zumba experience and a bad Zumba experience, make sure the instructor is certified and make sure the certification has not lapsed. Most instructors are listed on the Zumba site to keep people informed.
- Make sure to warm up and cool down
- consult a medical professional or exercise professional to be sure that you can continue with this type of physical activity.
- Workout at your own level, there are different levels, choose one that you know you can do and will be comfortable doing.
- Wear shoes with good support
- let loose and have fun, be yourself.
- fully extend your arms during arm movements in order to reap the benefits of calorie burning
- Push yourself to move up and down more on the appropriate movements, it will help burn more calories and will activate the glute, hips and leg muscles
- if you miss a step or cannot keep up, jog or march in place until you can get back in, do not stop.