WHAT?! You've never been to a ZUMBA class?!?!
Don't panic, you 're about to have the best fun you've ever had in a fitness class!
I have been teaching ZUMBA Fitness classes for over 7 years and before that I was a class participant myself so I know exactly how you feel.
Here are my Top 10 Tips of how to survive your first ZUMBA fitness class
1. TELL THE INSTRUCTOR YOU'RE NEW
The instructor is the key to your success so if they know you're new or it's your first class with them they'll be able to give you information about the class, the best place to stand, what to expect etc.
2. TELL THE INSTRUCTOR IF YOU HAVE ANY INJURIES, ILLNESSES OR HEALTH ISSUES
This is really important. The instructor can offer you options or modifications to moves which might not be suitable for you. They can also check on you throughout the class to make sure you're ok.
3. DON'T HIDE AT THE BACK!
The edge of the dance floor is never as much fun as right in the thick of it. ZUMBA classes are mainly taught using visual cues so you won't often hear the instructor barking instructions. It's therefore important that you can clearly see them. Try to aim for the middle of the class rather than the far sides or back.
4. DRINK WATER
You will sweat in a ZUMBA class. It's really important to stay hydrated whilst exercising. It's recommended you drink at least 1lt of water for every hour you exercise.
5. WEAR SUITABLE CLOTHING
As I said, you will get hot so make sure you are wearing clothing that's suitable for exercise. Remember to bring a jumper or sweatshirt to put on after too. Ladies, two words - SPORTS BRA!
6. WEAR SUITABLE SHOES
ZUMBA is a fitness class and therefore shoes are ESSENTIAL. If you do not have trainers with you for class the instructor may turn you away as it's important that your feet are protected during the class. Any trainers are fine, they do not have to be anything special. Just comfortable and clean!
7. NOT A DANCER? YES, YOU ARE!
There is no right or wrong in a ZUMBA class. Every single person has their own way of moving, don't be afraid of yours. The more you relax and forget about how you look the harder your body will work and the more calories you'll burn! I promise you that no one is watching or judging how you move - they're all too busy having fun!
8. ALWAYS BE EARLY
Again, ZUMBA is a fitness class therefore participation in the warm-up and cool down are essential. If you're body isn't correctly warmed up then there is a risk of injury. No one wants that. If you are late for class and miss the warm-up the instructor will turn you away. I'm sorry. This is for your benefit. I want your body (and mind) to be really ready for the party.
9. NEED A BREAK?
If you feel you need to take a break in the middle of the class, that's fine. Move to the side of the room and stay standing and keep moving gently. If you suddenly stop and sit you may feel faint. Breathers and breaks are fine.
10. AT THE END OF THE CLASS - THANK THE INSTRUCTOR
If you're new we like to hear your thoughts and feedback. Don't worry if you felt a little confused in your first class. It takes between 4-6 classes of anything new for your body and brain to get used to the workout. Next time you'll find it much easier and you'll probably remember some of the routines too!
Caroline is licensed to Teach the following Zumba classes:
- Zumba Toning
License to teach body-sculpting techniques using Zumba Toning Sticks to enhance rhythm and build strength.
- Aqua Zumba
License to teach the 'pool party' workout for all ages using the Zumba® formula and traditional aqua techniques.
- Zumba Sentao
Licensed to teach the party-like workout that incorporates chairs to improve strength, definition and endurance.
- Zumba Gold
License to teach specially designed Zumba classes for the active older adult or deconditioned participant.
- Zumba Gold Toning
License to teach Zumba® Gold-Toning classes.
- Zumba Step
License to teach lower body workouts using a blend of Zumba® routines and step aerobics.