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Getting exercise by dancing

Written by Megan Stonecipher and posted in health

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What is Zumba?

Zumba is an aerobic exercise that is a high-energy dance fitness class.  Throughout class the instructor teaches you choreographed dance moves to different parts of songs with non-verbal cues normally.  Although unlike traditional dance, you don’t have to worry about doing the dance moves precisely because Zumba is more of a fun, free flowing fitness class.  

What to expect from your first class

  • Most Zumba classes are around an hour long and start out with a warm-up and end with a cool-down followed by stretching.  
  • You probably won’t know what to do all of the time but don’t worry because the instructors of Zumba classes often make their choreographed dances simple and easy to follow so you will be able to catch on.
  • Don’t feel like you need to get every single move down the first time around because no one ever does!
  • The first five to ten minutes of class are the hardest because that is when you are figuring out your instructor’s cueing - the majority of Zumba instructors use non-verbal cues to tell you what to do and when to do it, but don’t worry there are often only 6-10 cues and they can be easily picked up after a while.
  • For your first class try to arrive ten minutes early so you can go up to the instructor and let them know that this is your first class - the instructor will be able to give you helpful tips and advice before starting which could make easing into Zumba all the more easier.
  • There will be some things you won’t catch onto in your first, second, or even third class which is okay - just try to do the dances to the best of your ability and know that the dances will become easier after a few classes.
  • Although there are often short 30-60 second water breaks in between songs - still feel free to take water breaks when needed and pop back in whenever you are done.

What to bring with you

  • Wear sneakers - this is not a dance class but rather a fitness class, so be sure to wear tennis shoes because you will be moving around a lot. 
  • Moveable and breathable clothes - since Zumba classes are rather popular, they can be rather full- so the room can heat up pretty quickly depending on the type of room you are in.
  • A water bottle and towel - you will work up a sweat during class so be sure to bring along a towel and a water bottle to stay hydrated.
  • An excited attitude - don’t stress about people judging you or you not doing the dance moves right, just worry about having fun and getting in a good exercise.
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Published July 11th, 2017
Last updated July 17th, 2017
Tags exercise dance health
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