I have taught over 1,000 Zumba classes over the last nine years and I have seen the benefits people have gained from doing Zumba.
Many people have come to my Zumba classes to lose weight, keep fit, or doing something active with friends. Sometimes for all of those reasons.
However, being a Zumba Instructor has let me see first hand the extra benefits students get when they move and groove to Latin and International music.
So I have listed 10 of these benefits which are also great reasons to attend a Zumba Class.
1. Zumba Mixes Dance with Fitness
Zumba which was created by Beto Perez quite by accident back in the mid 1990’s, is a fusion of simple easy to follow dance routines with fitness variations or movements.
Many people love to do dance, especially Latin dance, and also get fit in a group or class setting. So Zumba combines these two popular elements into one fitness program. Zumba is a workout in disguise.
2. Lose Weight
Burn calories (or should I be saying kilojoules) and maintain or decrease calorie intake, and you will lose weight. Well that definitely happens for those that do Zumba Fitness classes.
I have students that have burnt in the region of 799 to 900+ calories in a one hour class of Zumba. Instructors burn even more calories in the region of 1,000 plus due to their fitness level and extra energy to inspire our students.
3. Improve Your Cardio
If anything gets your heart rate and lungs going its Zumba! Routines involve steps forwards and back and side to side, salsa travel and more. Students wearing pedometers during an hour class record over 10,000 steps. Glad I’m not counting!
To raise the cardio level you take bigger steps and body movements. Otherwise if you’re fitness level is low or you’re still getting used to the routines, then smaller steps and body movements are used. The music still stays at the same tempo.
It get’s your heart rate up high as well as getting your lungs to exchange large volumes of air.
4. Improve Your Toning
Besides cardio benefits, Zumba also improves the toning of your muscles. Squats, lunges, and leg lifts work the leg muscles. Hip movements and knee lift crunches work the inner core. A variety of arm movements also tone the arm muscles. Then all of these leg, torso and arm movements also tone your back muscles and inner core.
All round you get a pretty good toning workout. After a few weeks of Zumba many people start to notice their muscles looking more ripped. Now you won’t end up like a bodybuilder in Zumba. That would be impossible due to the high reps of movements. However your muscle condition and definition will definitely improved provided you also follow a healthy eating regime.
5. Improve Coordination
I’ve lost count of the number of times new students have told me they are uncoordinated. However if they stick to regular classes very soon they relax and I notice how their coordination gets better each time.
If the Zumba Instructor is doing their job Zumba should be easy to follow. Moving your arms, legs and body in time with the rythym and melody of music improves your coordination.
Many older people suffer from poor coordination which can lead to accidents. So older students also benefit from becoming more coordinated from doing regular Zumba classes.
6. Time Flies
A couple of warmup tracks, eight ro so Zumba tracks, and a cooldown track… Boom! That hour is already over.
If you ever wanted time to fly then Zumba is the thing for you. You know the old saying, “Time flies while you;re having fun”? Well that certainly applies to Zumba.
60 minutes of Zumba feels more like 20 minutes. But at least when we finish off the cooldown and stretches it leaves us wanting more.
7. Make New Friends
There is a huge social benefit to doing Zumba Classes. You get to meet like minded people who in many cases some will become your friends.
Human beings can’t help connecting with each other. When you see other people each week in class social bonds are bound to be formed.
8. Great Music and Dance Styles
Music and dance are one of those things that make the World go round. Every country has it’s own flavour of music and dance style.
Zumba was created back in the mid 1990’s by a young Columbian dance and gym instructor, Beto Perez, so Zumba Fitness is largely based on Latin music and dance.
Since Latin dancing has taken the Western World by storm in the late 1990’s, people everywhere are finding out they really enjoy the distinct Latine tunes and ryhthyms.
From Merengue to Salsa, Samba to Reggaeton, Zumba covers it all. And then some. So it’s rewarding to see people incorporating their love of South Anerican culture in their fitness classes.
9. Improves Confidence and Self Esteem
When a student turns up to one of my Zumba classes for the first time, they are usually at the back of the class. They are nervous about whether they will “get” the routines and don’t want the other more experienced students to see them learning the moves.
I always tell them there are two important thinsg to remember to get the most out of Zumba. They are Relax and Have Fun!
Then I see them see while a smile appears on their face. After a few classes I notice many of these new studenst make their way to the front of teh class. Their confidence is increasing as they realise it wasn’t that hard. Plus they’re getting their energy back.
A great way to feel accomplished and boost self esteem in a fun easy way.
10. Stress Relief
Physical exercise has been proven again and again to relieve stress. The type of mental stress we may get from our work, family issues, financial issues, relationships, depression, certain events, hectic schedules, and so on.
If we have had a bad day at work we might go out for a brisk walk to alleviate the tension and negative thoughts that cause us stress. Take our mind of things.
Zumba is a great remedy to help anyone with stress relief. You can really rock it out at high impact if you wish.
It’s even better doing something that’s enjoyable amongst others enjoying themselves too. Before you know it, you’re lost in the music and a good cardio session reduces or eliminates those horrid symptons of stress.
Here’s an extra benefit of Zumba…
BONUS: 11. Improve Brain Function
The one thing most people fear as we get older is detoriating brain function. This quite often leads to dementia or Alzheimer’s Disease.
Researchers have anaylsed various activities against data of elderly people and dementia. Activities included walking and running, doing crosswords and puzzles.
However the results were that “people who danced four or more times a week had a 76 percent lower dementia risk than people who said they rarely or never danced,” In fact, of all the physical activities the researchers looked at, dancing was the only one associated with a significantly lower dementia risk.
So the moral of the story is to keep dancing, keep doing Zumba, and enjoy these 10 great healthy benefits for yourself.