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12/07 Sunday 10:08AM

let's zumba!


How does one get in shape or get fit if one is not terribly keen on the offerings in a gym or does not fancy bending into a pretzel shape on a yoga mat? If you prefer your workouts to be fun and energising then you can turn to the worldwide phenomenon that has gotten the world hot and heaving to the beat of Latin music - the Zumba.

Zumba is a dance workout created by Colombian fitness and aerobics instructor, Beto Perez. It combines high energy and catchy music with aerobic steps and easy dance moves borrowed from the cha-cha, merengue, calypso, samba, rhumba, salsa  to give you a 'happy-feel-good' workout with body-sculpting benefits. It has been celebrated as a fitness program for the mind, body and spirit.  Physically, you can burn up to 800 calories in an hour, build cardio strength and tone muscles, especially the core abdominal muscles.  Mentally, you can relieve stress and stimulate your brain by learning new steps and coordination. It can also help lift your spirits by inducing a sense of joy, confidence and self-esteem.

We took a dive into this dynamic fitness program that is attractively termed a Dance Fitness-Party and found it fetchingly addictive and wildly enjoyable. Although it involves dance steps, it is not mind-numbingly technical and there are no strict rules of getting it right - you just need to feel the beat and move to the music and while you are at it, invisible calories will melt away without you knowing it.  It is like clubbing in spandex attire and instead of a DJ, you have an instructor, and whooeeee, is it exhilirating!

The Zumba instructor will lead the class with simple moves of dance and fitness, and students just have to 'feel' the pulsating rhythms and move along. In the midst of the program, fitness moves like lunges, biceps curls and arm-toning moves are incorporated. Any shape and size of body can take on Zumba and it does not matter if you are uncoordinated.

What do you need for this party? Zumba-wear is not necessary unless you are a pure devotee of all-things Zumba.  You will fit right in with sweat pants, shorts, tank tops, t-shirts or whatever you are comfortable in. Cross trainers or dance sneakers are recommended but for a start, comfortable lace-ups will do. Finally, a bottle of water and towel are essential.

image:Zumba Brunei

image:Zumba Brunei

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