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Get in Shape the 'Zumba' Way

By HERWriter Blogger
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Fitness related image Photo: Getty Images

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only 35 percent of adults age 18 and over engage in regular leisure time physical activity. And, 33 percent of adults engage in NO physical activity at all.

Perhaps if these people found something fun and enjoyable to do that was also a workout, they would want to do it regularly. Perhaps, they should try one of the newest fitness crazes hitting gyms throughout the country: Zumba fitness.

The Zumba Fitness website says, “since its inception in 2001, the Zumba program has grown to become the world's largest – and most successful – dance-fitness program with more than 12 million people of all shapes, sizes and ages taking weekly Zumba classes in over 110,000 locations across more than 125 countries.”

Corporate fitness specialist and Zumba instructor extraordinaire, Vernette Hudson-McKnight of My 360 Fitness Atlanta, answered a few questions in an interview for this article about Zumba and how it can jumpstart a fitness routine and inject some fun back into fitness:

What is Zumba? “Zumba is a Cardio workout that incorporates popular Latin inspired dances such as the Samba, Reggaeton, Salsa, Flamenco and Cumbia. These dances together with high energy music give you Zumba! No prior dance experience necessary.”

How long have you been teaching Zumba and what drew you to it? “I have been teaching Zumba Fitness since 2007 when Beto Perez, the founder and creator of Zumba, was teaching the Zumba Certification workshops. As a professional dancer, it was a no-brainer to gain interest in this new innovative way of exercising.”

What benefits can one expect from a good Zumba workout? “What is not to gain? Typically in my class you will experience a workout conducive to your fitness level whether you are advanced or a beginner. Common benefits are stress reduction, increased circulation, burned calories (up to 500 calories per class), increased muscle strength and weight loss to name a few.”

Is Zumba for everyone? “Zumba is for anyone who wants to have fun while becoming healthier. I encourage anyone to try a class. They’ll be surprised at how simple it is to pick up the moves.”

Why do you think Zumba has gained in popularity in the past few years? “This revolution of exercising has changed so many lives by its structure of the 'workout'. Its infamous slogan 'Ditch the Workout, Join the Party' is a motto that I live by when I teach all of my classes because it creates an environment where people of all exercise backgrounds can feel comfortable and dance their worries away.”

For someone who wants to look forward to working out and who wants to have fun while getting in shape, Zumba fitness could be a great addition to anyone’s workout routine.


Interview with Vernette Hudson-McKnight, MS, CPT, PES via email 21, August, 2011.
Pleis JR, Ward BW, Lucas JW. Summary health statistics for U.S. adults: National Health Interview Survey, 2009. National Center for Health Statistics. Vital Health Stat 10(249). 2010. Web. 5, September, 2011. Abstract: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/series/sr_10/sr10_249.pdf

Zumba Fitness. Web. 5, September, 2011.

Edited by Jody Smith

Add a Comment2 Comments

HERWriter Blogger

Thanks! I know exactly what you mean! The hour does fly by...so much more for me then running.

September 6, 2011 - 6:21pm

Great article Maria! I love Zumba! Not only a great workout - but so much fun!! The hour flies by dancing away! Great way to mix up the gym routine when you need a break from the typical cardio monotony! Thanks for sharing!

September 6, 2011 - 1:38pm
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.



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