Zumba is a Latin-inspired dance class which incorporates elements of other dances from India and Africa. Zumba was invented in Columbia in 1990 and takes its name from the Spanish word for the buzzing of bees, as well as a Columbian slang term for fast. There are many reasons why Zumba has become so popular. Here are a few.
1. It’ll give you the best endorphin rush ever
Any aerobic exercise will provide you with a sudden release of feel-good hormones known as endorphins and this results in the natural high that comes as a result of running and other types of exercise. This endorphin rush is heightened when you participate in Zumba largely due to the combination of the upbeat music and the high-energy group dynamic. This endorphin kick will help relieve stress and make you feel happier as a result.
2. It’ll get you in shape
The total body workout that Zumba offers will get you a toned body the likes of a professional dancer. The more you take part in Zumba, the more muscular and sculpted your body will look. Since Zumba is a weight-bearing exercise, it also burns way more calories than activities such as biking, rowing, and swimming.
3. It’s just like interval training—but more fun!
Remember this drill from high school gym class? Run or walk a minute and then sprint for 10 or 12 seconds. Repeat this 8 or 10 times. This classic exercise gets your heart racing to approximately 90% of your maximum heart rate, then back down to roughly about 60%, and you do this for around 20-30 minutes. Guess what? Zumba does the same thing. After a Zumba class, you will enjoy the same stoked metabolism even hours after your finish your final routine.
4. It’s a great place to make new friends
Almost 25 years after it was first introduced, Zumba is still one of the world’s most popular fitness programs. Zumba’s popularity has attracted many health-conscious people from all walks of life which almost guarantees you’ll meet others who share the same interests as you and this will likely lead to some new friendships.
5. It’s incredibly inclusive
Zumba is for everyone. It doesn’t matter if you’ve never exercised in your entire life or if you're 10-15 pounds overweight; you don’t have to fear judgment from your fellow Zumba fans. Zumba is a supportive community where everyone is truly rooting for each other to reach their fitness goals and this will give you the motivation you need to persevere.
6. You can do it anywhere
Zumba is so popular that you’re likely no more than 10 or 15 minutes away from Zumba class most days of the week. If you’d rather work out on your own, you don’t have to go to a gym or community center to take part in a Zumba class. You can always stream Zumba routines online or put in a DVD or Blu Ray and work out in your own living room. Sometimes, you can even find Zumba classes being offered outdoors!
7. You can personalize your routine
Are you not the world’s best dancer? There is no right or wrong way to go through the Zumba movements. If you struggle remembering the dance sequences, you can always just take it one section at a time. As long as you’re still moving and enjoying yourself, you’re doing it right.
8. It’ll make you smarter
Learning Zumba moves gives your brain a good workout, as well as your body. A major study has shown that dancing also increases cognitive acuity at all ages. Dancing is known to integrate several brain functions at once including kinesthetic, rational, musical, and emotional, further increasing your brain connectivity.
9. It’ll increase your confidence
Studies have shown when we feel good about our bodies, we tend to feel better about ourselves. Zumba also improves body posture, which will naturally increase your confidence. You’re also encouraged to smile while doing Zumba, so this infectious optimism will also transfer into other aspects of your life.
10. You’ll forget that you’re even exercising!
Let’s face it, sometimes exercising can feel more like a chore. Zumba is so much fun you’ll forget you’re working out. Unlike other types of physical activity, Zumba is not a competition; rather, it feels like one awesome dance party.