Go Zumba!

By Yollette Merritt
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Monday night Zumba at the Black Box Cabaret. Photo by Yollette Merritt.

What’s a better way to start off the semester than to make a commitment to be active and exercise? On top of that, Zumba can help you to continue and expand horizons, as well as your circle of friends!

Good news. California State University, Monterey Bay’s Associated Students continues to offer the perfect option for being active – Zumba!

Free sessions are led by experienced Zumba instructor, Michelle Salvador, with volunteer participants invited on stage to support and demonstrate moves. Zumba is inclusive and open to all – no matter your skill set or level. The atmosphere is friendly and fun, and easy to join in. The sessions takes place at the Black Box Cabaret on Monday evenings at 6 p.m. and last for one hour.

Here are ten reasons to Zumba in 2019:

  • Fun way to burn calories
  • Cardio exercise
  • Easy to follow along
  • Tightens and tones muscles all over the body
  • Stimulates the brain with focused choreography
  • Feels like a party
  • Great activity to share with friends
  • Helps de-stress
  • Can be done by anyone
  • It’s free! (with your Otter ID)

And now for a little Zumba history.

Founded in 1991 by Colombian Alberto Perez, the original name coined for the exercise fitness program was “Rumbacize.” This word stems from the words “rumba” (to party as well as name of a dance) and “Jazzercize.” It was later changed to “Zumba” – which has no special meaning, until now. According to Alberto Perlman, a partner with Perez, in 2015, Zumba was practiced in 186 countries by an estimated 14 million Zumba students.

The key features of Zumba are the energetic dance and aerobic-like movements with choreography from hip-hop, mambo, merengue, salsa, and soca with lunges and squats that are accompanied by upbeat and typically fast-moving music. Depending on the energy exerted, it is estimated that a person can burn up to 600 calories during a typical one-hour session.

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