When the Health and Beauty Society sent round an invitation to a Zumba Taster Class, I couldn’t resist selecting ‘attending’ on Facebook. Having always wanted to try it out, and after a few Latin Aerobics lessons last year, it was the perfect opportunity to test a new way to keep fit and have fun.
Zumba has suddenly emerged as one of the most popular methods of fitness, having started in 2001, and now over 12 million people all over the world take part in the activity. Advertising itself as an ‘exhilarating, effective, easy-to-follow, Latin-inspired, calorie-burning dance fitness-party™’, it’s clear to see why it has become the main competitor for other fitness classes such as Pilates, Yoga and Aerobics. I certainly couldn’t wait to try it out for myself.
The class, on Wednesday 19th October, took place in the dance hall in Archer’s Bar, an ideal space with plenty of room. This was vital – not long after I arrived the hall filled with students clad in sports-gear and hoodies, both eager and nervous about the evening ahead. When the music started, our instructor, Helena, reassured us that this was a beginners class and was all about having fun.
The evening went incredibly quickly, a blur of Latin-American, belly-dance and modern dance moves combined with Shakira, Pitbull, Pussycat Dolls and even some Latin Pop. After warming up, we started slowly. I began to think it was going to be an easy ride – but how wrong I was! After a lot of giggling and dancing, the routines became more challenging and complicated without losing the element of fun. When we stopped for a drink of water, we were all surprised at how worn out we all were. The Zumba was really working, but we didn’teven notice. By the end of the hour, we felt tired but exhilarated – the sign of a brilliant workout.
‘I love Zumba because it’s like dancing.’ She said ‘I also do Pilates and Aerobics, though I don’t like Aerobics quite as much. Zumba is much nicer – it’s relaxing and can make you happy and keep you fit, but you don’t think about it because you’re having so much fun’.
A few of the girls at the event spoke to me at the end of the night about their thoughts on the taster session. Caroline Marchal, a foreign languages student, said ‘I was really surprised – but in a good sense!’ This seemed to be the general consensus;
I was really surprised – but in a good sense!Caroline Marchal
‘It was really, really good’, said Jaz, a second year Economics student, when I asked her what she thought. ‘It’s something I’d never normally get round to doing otherwise, and I’d definitely do it again’.
We had an amazing turnout, and there was a fantastic vibe!Gemma BrownVice-President of Health and Beauty Society
Gemma Brown, Vice-President of the Health and Beauty Society, was pleased with how the evening went, as it was their first Zumba taster session. ‘It was brilliant and went really well’ she said ‘We had an amazing turnout, and there was a fantastic vibe. Everyone’s in a great mood – it’s been a very successful evening!’
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For more information on Helena’s Fitness in Southampton, visit: