Zumba: Staying Fit The fun Way
by Zara Khurana
June 1, 2019
Being fit may sound tiresome and strict but it isnâ€™t just about going to the gym. There are a number of fun and easy ways to stay fit that definitely donâ€™t involve going to the gym. Personally, I am a bit of a gym junkie. I am what people say â€śobsessedâ€ť. Starting my fitness journey from 95 kilos to 63 kilos at the age of 19 was no easy feat and there were a lot of ups and down. 26 now and still going strong. However, being fit is more than just physical. Itâ€™s a state of mind, a lifestyle, a visceral feeling that determines and shapes our life. Maybe that was a bit too intense, but the point is that fitness is not just about hardcore training, strict eating regimen and sacrificing fun. Au contraire, fitness can be loads of fun if done right. There are a number of ways to be fit but personally, I would recommend Zumba. Itâ€™s the ultimate dance workout that involves all the muscles in our body, gets the blood rushing and spikes our mood!
Zumba: The Calorie Burning Jitterbug
Thereâ€™s a reason Zumba is a very popular form of workout. Itâ€™s fun, quirky, light and has so many variations that it works for every type of person. I started Zumba about 4 years ago when I joined a new gym. I was in college, very shy and extremely nervous about a new gym since Iâ€™d only been to one gym since I started my weight loss journey. Do you know what happens to a wide-eyed young fitness freak during Zumba? She blooms! The combination of aerobic dance moves, funky Latin music and the sense of comradery is a heady mix that takes over and makes you want to do it all day long. It burns an insane amount of calories and increases the level of dopamine in our brain. Now that is a win-win situation. I promise you. Once you start doing Zumba, you will become addicted and it will keep you fit, happy and excited.
Perks of Zumba
So why is Zumba so amazingly awesome? Well, there are loads of reasons for that. Letâ€™s go.
You will burn calories like crazy
You may be surprised to know that a one hour Zumba class can make you burn anywhere from 400-800 calories depending on your body type, age, gender, and stamina! Yes. Just with one hour of Zumba, you burn that much. Beats running like a crazed dog on the treadmill doesnâ€™t it?
Your endurance increases a lot
Imagine one hour in the gym and youâ€™ll probably have heart palpations and decreased motivation. No harm done. With one hour of Zumba however, your endurance and stamina go up, up, up. That is because of the constant back and forth between vigorous moves and cool down period makes your heartbeat race and slow again and again and this kind of workout for an hour improves strength, flexibility, and endurance. And whatâ€™s more? Itâ€™s fun from the first minute to the last.
Your posture improves automatically
One of the biggest mistakes newbies make in the gym is working out in the wrong posture. No matter how many reps or sets youâ€™ve done, if a workout is being done wrong then your posture is going to be seriously affected. With Zumba however, you donâ€™t have to be so diligent or strict about your posture. The combination os sala, mambo, merengue, aerobics, etc work those muscles that a gym workout doesnâ€™t. The feisty dance moves ensure your posture remains upright, your back is straight, your chest is out and your hands are grooving.
Your confidence increases tenfold
You may be wondering, how is a dance workout possibly supposed to make me feel confident? Zumba is one such dance workout that uses your body fully and is in a social setting where you dance with other people around you. This, in turn, increases your confidence, self-esteem and boosts the happy hormone. If that wasnâ€™t enough, it is common knowledge that when we are engrossed in something we enjoy doing, we feel good about ourselves.
Your coordination increases dramatically
Of course! Itâ€™s dance. Any sort of dance movement automatically requires coordination. But Zumba is not an ordinary dance form. It requires all your muscles, engages your core, strengthens your legs and helps in balance. That leads to increased coordination and better movement.
Your anxiety is controlled
Now side point: Personally for me, the gym has been my salvation. It is literally my safe zone where I donâ€™t just feel like myself but I feel like I can conquer the world. It has dramatically and amazingly helped with my anxiety and boosts my mood every single day.
However, for a lot of people, the gym can be an intimidating and scary environment. Thereâ€™s fear of judgment, low confidence due to body image issues and certain hesitations in asking for help. With Zumba, itâ€™s a community-based activity which will boost your mood, get you fit and forget that youâ€™re exercising. That is the ultimate cure for anxiety!
Itâ€™s a full-body toning workout
Zumba is a fun-filled, robust dance exercise that will help you physically and mentally. One of its biggest pros, in my opinion, is the amount of toning one can do with Zumba. It uses muscles and body parts that would otherwise remain unused and keeps you in shape.
This is why Zumba is fun and this is why you should do it. Itâ€™s simple, exhausting but oh-so-good! However, if you have back or knee issues, it would be best if you consulted with your doctor before starting an activity like Zumba. It may be fun but it is definitely gonna tire you out.
How to start
Search for Zumba classes around your area and schedule a trial class. That one trial class will be your starting point and will give you an idea of what to expect from that particular Zumba instructor and the tone of the class. I say this because while Zumba is a unified active dance workout, every instructor is different and every class has a unique vibe. It will not only make you fit without realizing it, it is fun, you will make friends and lead you on a path to good health and amazing life. So go ahead. Find a Zumba class nearby and started on the fun kind of fit that has everyone wagging their tongues and butts!
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Ludens Van Hunen
June 22, 2019
I loved reading this article, such a huge inspiration!