Zumba is the latest Latin-inspired dancing trend to gain prominence and popularity and it’s fair to say that it’s one of the more popular dances at the moment. This is partly because of the energetic nature of the dance moves, as well as the fun that can be had dancing Zumba style.
Of course then it’s no surprised then that these energetic and already-popular movements are now being marketed as a form of exercise which has been a big hit. But will it get you into shape?
The Zumba Workout
The Zumba workout is similar to ‘boxercise’ in that it has taken some repetitive energetic movements that are relatively accessible and turned them into a workout. Of course part of the benefit of the Zumba workout is that it’s fun meaning that you can get fit while dancing and, and at the same time you are also likely to enjoy learning the moves themselves which you can then use elsewhere.
The basic Zumba moves involve things like twisting the hips to move you across the floor and stepping in and out to the beat. The tempo can of course be increased to increase the workout intensity and this means that’s it’s relatively approachable for all levels of fitness.
As mentioned a lot of the moves in Zumba involve twisting the hips and the shoulders which is great for the core stability and particularly the obliques. It’s also very provocative as a dance. Some of these movements are very quick too and involve quick changes in direction such as in the tragaron step which involves quickly sliding left and right and leading with your shoulders. Most of these steps also have complementary arm movements which helps to involve the whole body and really work the cardiovascular system. The speed of these movements means that the dance is well suited to working out and more so than some of the other dance workouts.
So the question is then: will a Zumba workout get you in great shape? Well the answer is yes and no – if you’re just looking to lose weight then any fast and repetitive movement will do the job, and if you dance enthusiastically enough and often enough then you will of course lose a good amount of weight.
However at the same time the Zumba workout is not especially effective compared to other dance workouts – so it’s really just a matter of choosing a dance style that appeals to you (though of course the speed of the Zumba dance makes it particularly well suited to losing weight). At the same time if you are serious about toning muscle and burning fat, then there are more intensive workouts that can do the same job more quickly such as resistance training and jogging. But as a fun way to learn a new dance and burn some calories Zumba might just be the answer for you.