Fitness buffs that want to put a little pep in their step when they work out have Alberto “Beto” Perez to thank. In October 1998, the Colombian dancer and aerobics instructor forgot to bring his regular exercise music to class. He did, however, have salsa and merengue music on him, and when he played them to accompany his routine, a whole new workout was born. Originally called Rumbacize, Zumba has no meaning in particular. It’s simply a brand name!
But Zumba isn’t just about the music—it’s also about the moves. Influences include salsa, merengue, cumbia, and reggaeton, but these days, a Zumba class can incorporate just about any move. According to web.md, an hour-long session burns about 369 calories—more than cardio kickboxing and step aerobics. Zumba is an interval workout that shifts between high- and low-intensity moves, giving you a solid yet fun cardiovascular routine that targets the core, butt, and legs, and improves flexibility and endurance.
Ready to give it a try? My Pope checks out the city for free (and affordable!) Zumba classes. As always, if this is your first time to attempt Zumba—or any fitness routine, for that matter—please get clearance from your family physician.
Some gyms offer free trial sessions for you to see whether it’s the routine for you. 360 Fitness Club requires you to sign up for a free trial appointment, as does Fitness First. Take advantage of these free trials!
There’s always a free Zumba class in your neighborhood!
Live near or at The Fort in Bonifacio Global City? Drop by McKinley Hill Information Center (across One World Square) on Saturdays at 8 am for free Zumba classes. Organized by property developer Megaworld, the once-a-week class doesn’t just promise a full-body workout. “Since Zumba is considered a fun and social dance party, you’ll be able to interact with fun people too!” says the website.
Live near or in Quezon City? Head to Quezon Memorial Circle, where there are activities galore to try, including Zumba morning classes, which are held at People’s Hall. A nominal fee of P50 will get you an invigorating hour’s workout.
Live near or in Makati? With its sprawling grounds, Circuit Makati is ideal for outdoor activities, including Zumba, which happens daily at the Globe Circuit Events Grounds (by the riverside walk) from 5 am to 6 am. Walk-ins are welcome! Just pay the instructor P30 after the class.