This mix of Latin, salsa, samba, meringue, cumbia and hip hop dancing burst on the scene in the nineties. It began to gain popularity in the last several years as fitness clubs, dance clubs and videos are showing people how to get fit and have fun at the same time.
One benefit of exercise is an improved mood and focus. What if you could get that without feeling that you actually did some work? For those who have never danced before, the steps will come to you in time. Actually you burn more calories learning them.
In a typical Zumba workout, you can burn as many as 600 or more calories in an hour. And, that hour goes by fast when you are really into the session.
So how do you burn so much fat and get in shape? For one, combining different dance moves requires core control. That means squeezing your abs so you stand up straight and are able to move in so many different directions without injury.
There are elements of plyometric exercises like the ones athletes do in training. These short bursts increase your heart rate and also strengthen the muscles in the legs.
Zumba is a full body workout. To increase heart rate, you not only keep your legs moving but your arms raised above your head. The arms are an integral part of the moves so you are always working your cardiovascular system.
There is more than one level of dance with Zumba so it works to increase the heart health of all ages. If you can’t do the jumps at first, then move on the floor but keep your arms going and the energy high so you still burn fat and calories. To keep you motivated, many of today’s hottest tunes are set to routines. Instructors are taught how to break down the moves for you and demonstrate them slowly at first before moving up to tempo.
Zumba is not all fast, though. You may get a mix of belly dancing music and all that hip action to strengthen hip flexors and improve abdominal strength. By alternating between fast and slower sequences, you get to regulate your breathing so you can keep up without being overtired.
And, the more you participate, the better your heart rate and lung function. Now, you can show off your dance moves, get your groove on and burn calories at the same time. If Zumba is too high impact for you, there are also aquatic Zumba options, Zumba toning and Zumba for kids.