Zumba hits Cabrini

By Kelsey Kastrava
February 15, 2010

For a section of a routine, Carlson splits the class in groups for a friendly dance-off. photo by KELSEY KASTRAVA

Finally there is an excuse to ditch the treadmill. An exhilarating exercising revolution has hit Cabrini with its one-hour calorie-burning Latin aerobics class known as Zumba.

“I heard about the class through my roommate,” Lizzie Williams, senior pre-medical biology major, said. “She said it was an aerobics class that wasn’t tedious. You just dance and shake it the whole time.”

One particular Cabrini student is no stranger to Zumba. Kimberly Carlson, sophomore political science major, assumed the role of Zumba instructor at Cabrini last semester when a previous instructor stopped showing up to class.

“I’ve been doing Zumba for two years,” Kim Carlson, sophomore political science major, said. “I recently got Zumba-certified because I hate working out and wanted to bring a fun way of exercising to Cabrini.”

Carlson was excited to continue her Zumba workouts at school but was disappointed when the classes were canceled. After approaching the fitness coordinator about becoming the instructor she got her chance.

Zumba has been a developing phenomenon since 1999 when Beto Perez created the idea of Latin-style aerobics in Cali, Colombia.  In 2001, the United States adopted the idea and began selling thousands of exercise DVDs.

The success led to the birth of the Zumba Academy where Zumba lovers train and become certified to share the dance trend.

Today Zumba is advertised to anyone who wants to switch up his or her exercise routine.

“I was a little nervous attending the first class,” Meghan Conroy, junior psychology major, said. “I heard of Zumba before and when I looked up the hours for the gym I noticed Cabrini offered it.”

The class is designed to make getting in shape an enjoyable experience.

“A lot of people worry about what other people are going to think while their dancing,” Conroy said. “They all noticed real quick that no one pays mind to anyone except the instructor to follow the moves.”

“This is something that people don’t say ‘how much longer?’” Carlson said. “Trust me I count the milliseconds on the elliptical, but with Zumba I jam out to the music and before I know it we’re doing the cool down.”

Not only is the class enjoyable because it’s dancing, but the music seems to appeal to those who take the class.

“The music is up-to-date and has good beats,” Maureen Browne, elementary education major, said. “It’s a mix between hip-hop and some really interesting sounding Latin music, I love it.”

“The best part about instructing the class is that I’m helping out other people while helping myself,” Carlson said. “My initial nerves about not being good enough or being harshly critiqued by people in the class have all gone away. It’s all about having a good time. Zumba’s slogan couldn’t say it better, ‘Ditch the work out, join the party!’”

The Zumba class is held in the Dixon Center dance studio located in the fitness center on the second floor every Monday from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.

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Kelsey Kastrava

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