Keep fit with ZUMBA! Latin-inspired, easy to follow, dance fitness.
Welcome! Happiness is ... ZUMBA!
DANCE WITH YOUR HEART AND YOUR FEET WILL FOLLOW!
and from Mother Theresa ‘Let no one ever come to zumba without leaving better and happier’ - .. well, almost what she said (wee replacement of 'you' with 'zumba'!)
If you haven't been to one of my classes before, do come - Classes are really friendly, music great and the instructor (me!)is always genuinely delighted to welcome new folk aboard!
It's official - DANCE IS THE BEST FORM OF EXERCISE!
I have of course been 'shouting this from the rooftops' for 'forever' ... well, certainly since I started teaching Zumba six years ago (plus the three I did in the States prior to return).
For anyone who likes sats:
In recent class: calorie burn count was 919; and 6,235 steps!!
But most importantly, its FUN and UPLIFTING! Exercise by default.
If anyone is in any doubt as to Why dance? Why Zumba? Read article published in April edition of Alresford Forum mag answering both questions - in Articles & news items section of website
Classes really friendly - 'Friends are just strangers you are waiting to meet'. As a newcomer to this area, a few years ago, I have found my classes a life line - not just in providing me with the music and dance I so badly need - but in providing me with new friends (Writing, my other hat, is such a solitary existence!) So, a big thank you to everyone!
NEW STUDENTS I always feel for newcomers to class and those doing zumba for the first time. On the plus side, hopefully they'll love great music - but it is 'challenging' the first couple of weeks, trying to get your head around 15 new routines in a night! Most of my regulars groan when they're faced with one new routine - so I totally empathise with those who are taking on 15! My message is simple - don't panic, just enjoy the music and the rest will come. Most of us agree that it takes a few weeks to feel 'well into it' but it's definitely worth persevering. I have quoted a recent email which I think sums up alot of people's reaction to first class - plus my response and have put this in Contact, Comment and Funny Moments section of website. So for anyone apprehensive about 'taking the plunge' - read this first! I think it should reassure you!
'Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and cannot remain silent.'
For me, dance isn’t about ‘performance’ or necessarily ‘going anywhere with it’ – it’s about pure enjoyment, with improved mental and physical health happening by default.
In Sunday Telegraph (Feb 3) read about goal of Alberto Periman (Zumba Fitness boss) to quadruple UK's current 'flock' of a million. Huge pic of massive zumba class (no, not even Itchen Abbas hall could hold that number!) with LET'S ZUMBA! as caption underneath. Couple of comments rang true. In response to question 'So what is Zumba's secret?' 'It's inclusive and it's fun. It doesn't matter if you can dance or not. Nobody is judging you....Anyone, regardless of age, fitness or natural rhythm, can handle a Zumba class.' This has always been my message - good to see it in print!
I have so many funny moments which crease me up laughing in each class that I have decided to keep a record of them in Section of website: Contact, Comments and Funny Moments. If anyone reading this can think of any more, do let me know - undoubtedly there are many I'm not even aware of!
BACKGROUND TO ME AND ZUMBA
I discovered Zumba whilst living in the States and now, six years later, am keen to share my passion for the music and dance with others! Everybody should dance - everybody should zumba! There are no age or fitness limits – you do it at whatever level you feel comfortable.
I cannot stress enough the ‘feel good’ factor of zumba. It has nothing to do with how ‘good’ you are, or think you are, at dancing. It is about feeling and enjoying the music – which is truly international and covers merengue, salsa, cumbia, reggaethon and bhangra from bollywood – to mention just a few. There is no grand performance to work towards – the routines do not have to be step perfect! Nobody is looking – you really do ‘dance’ like there is nobody watching!
I receive many comments and this one is a fairly regular one - ".. so good to have found a great Zumba group, with a teacher who really enjoys herself too!" Sums it up for me - I love the music, the dance, the company - I just feel so lucky to be doing this. I remember my friend/instructor Penny, in the States, who used to regularly clasp her heart during class, uttering the words "I so love my job" and that's exactly how I feel. I know there are different approaches to zumba over here but for me it remains 'all about the music' - enjoying this in your own way, no rights or wrongs, just feeling it and loving it!
I've started making a list of what everyone says when they start zumba! It goes something like this:
I'm worried because:
1. I have two left feet
2. I have no coordination
3. I know I'll go the wrong way!
4. I love dancing but my kids disown me - even/especially in my own kitchen!
There are many more I could add to this list - these are just a selection of things said to me just today and yesterday! If I could round up everybody else who shares these feelings .... I'd make a fortune!
ZUMBA GOLD or LOWER IMPACT classes. Zumba Gold is not advanced Zumba! Misleading, I know - actually comes from 'golden years' - you can tell this is American marketing! These are lower impact routines, for those who either feel out of condition or maybe, a bit worried about being new to zumba - so a class for beginners, and also for slightly older folk who don't want a high impact class. South Wonston class amazing - 10 am Wednesday mornings - 10.30 Tuesdays Longparish going well too.
ZUMBATOMIC - for 4 - 12 year olds. As I was a primary school teacher (in previous life!) teaching children is nothing new to me - absolutely loving current sessions at Itchen Abbas Montessouri - my 'penguins' are amazing! Happy to go into schools and I am now offering an hours Zumbatomic at Children's Parties! See Zumbatomic section for details or ring to discuss.
Couple of Quotations :
"All the ills of mankind, all the tragic misfortunes that fill the history books, all the political blunders, all the failures of the great leaders have arisen merely from a lack of skill at dancing" - Moliere (... I'm sure he's got a point, there!)
Another one I just came across:
DON'T STOP DOING THINGS BECAUSE YOU'RE GROWING OLD.....
BECAUSE YOU'LL ONLY GROW OLD WHEN YOU STOP DOING THINGS!
I've just come across following in research I've been doing for History of Medicine Lecture - A Greek called Asclepiades 124 B.C. – 40 B.C. the first to study mental illness. He prescribed music, occupational therapy (work) and exercise, plus lots of wine! (to help calm and sleep) Confirms my belief in the Greeks and what they stood for!
Also, heard of the Aztec ruler Moctezuma? He's in one of my plays as Moctezumba! Not sure what the National Curriculum will make of that!
Couple of quotes to start 2014:
- 'Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving'(preferably with puncture kit to hand!.... thinking of my New Forest cycle holiday experience!)
- 'Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass. It's about learning how to dance in the rain'. (My daughter gave me this last quote, written on lovely 'box' which sits on my desk at home)
Back to Zumba! WEAR WHATEVER YOU LIKE - it's whatever you are comfortable in - I don't think many of us give it a second thought (your instructor is living proof of that!!)
If you're hesitating about doing zumba/worrying about age or level of fitness - DON'T! Just come along and enjoy. If there's one thing in life that never disappoints, its uplifting music. Plus of course a little good company!
Three regulars to one of my night classes - same family, three generations (daughter, mum and mum's mum) - love it! Living proof that Zumba is for everyone.
Leave you with my favourite ‘joke’. Two ladies ‘of a certain age’ sitting on the floor, at the end of a Zumba class. One turns to the other and says ‘The instructor asked me how flexible I was ….. I said I can’t make Tuesdays or Thursdays’!
Following are some examples of feedback from students:
Thanks for the email and all the info.
I definitely found it more of a workout this week - but so enjoyable. I love dancing and the music is great, it really wants to make you move to it.
I am so glad Tanya and Sue suggested I try it.
.. thanks to Jen for this - she started couple of weeks ago.
And from another lovely new student: "I really, really enjoyed your class. In my youth (many moons ago) I was a bit of a clubber and just loved to dance - your music is very much my taste so it didn't feel like an exercise class just really good fun." Thanks to Sue for that - loving having you in class!
And thank you so much Sue who's just sent me following to use in an article I will shortly be writing re: start of new Zumba Gold class - Stockbridge/Longstock area.
I love Sue's Zumba classes, the music is fab and it's such a lovely atmosphere that you really don't feel like you're exercising its just having fun to music. I haven't been coming very long so I still get the steps mixed up, but nobody cares and there is definitely no feeling of awkwardness. So if you want to get yourself moving and are thinking of something that leaves you with a smile on your face, get yourself down to one of Sue's classes.
Mean every word, cheers you definitely brighten up my morning 😀Sue
Thanks for your email! I really enjoyed your Zumba class last week! I've never done it before, but used to love dancing and clubbing when I was a bit younger (before kids!!!) so hoped that I would pick it up ok and I did! The routines were much more repetitive than I thought, and that made it easier to pick up. They weren't too complicated either, which helps! Some were obviously a bit easier than others, but I really enjoyed it!Will def be coming back again!
Lovely email from Helen who attended her first zumba class ever, in July at Bishops Sutton:
I absolutely loved my first try of Zumba - honestly I've never been to a class before or really knew what I was letting myself in.
Your article in the Alresford Forum really appealed to me and where I am in life at the moment. In fact I think it was more your outlook on life and music plus the enthusiasm for Zumba that stuck with me and gave me the courage to pop along last night.
I love good people, dancing, laughing and having fun so I'll be back next week plus will probably try and do a few more classes in the future.
Anyway - thank you for being so welcoming and making it fun
Feedback always makes my day From 'new student' 17.11.14
Thank you so much for being so welcoming..and yes I really did enjoy myself and I have to say I have I have aching muscles this morning where I didn’t know I had muscles!!!The routines were lovely..not so complicated you couldn’t learn them (relatively ) quickly therefore leaving time just to move ‘like Jagger!!’ which definitely needs more work on my part.I most definitely will see you next Monday Gill
Lovely comment by one of my ladies last night - "I've been to alot of classes but yours is the only one which, when I can't make it, I really miss". Thank you, Jen - comments like this make my day.
(18th March) thank you to Jean Zumba Gold Class:
I really enjoy these sessions thank you very much for making it such fun
"Thank you for introducing me to Zumba which has given me a great deal of happiness. I had been looking for something like this for a while and I'm so glad you introduced me to your classes."
"I have always felt comfortable at your classes. When I came to the first one, it was make or break - if I hadn't felt comfortable then I would not have returned a second time. Luckily I did and I've been loving it ever since"
Was so nice to hear Pat, who hasn't been able to get to class for last few weeks, say 'It was just like returning home - everyone welcomed me back like family'. Classes have taken on a really lovely friendly feel of late - I'm fine about people 'just popping in' every now and again, but having a core of regulars makes such a difference to the chemistry of a class. Huge thank you to everyone - feels like home to me too!
..this is the longest that I have ever kept attending anything (Pilates, Yoga, Gym) since before children, so you must be doing something right! See you tomorrow.Jx