Zumba exercise classes and programs have taken the fitness industry by storm, but if trying out a Latin dance class seems a little overwhelming, there's no need to let this fitness craze pass you by. Simply pick up one of the many Zumba exercise videos available so that you can try out these hot dance moves from the comfort of your own living room.
What Is Zumba?
Zumba Fitness was created by Alberto "Beto" Perez, a Colombian native and celebrity fitness trainer and choreographer. By matching hot international dance steps with energetic Latin rhythms, Beto created a dance and exercise routine designed to make fitness fun. People not only love the catchy rhythm of the music, but the dance steps are easy to follow. The result is a high-energy dance routine that ultimately helps create a toned, fit body.
Zumba Exercise Videos
For a full set of Zumba exercise videos, you need look no further than the Zumba website itself. The latest series of DVDs comes at a price generally equivalent to a three-month gym membership. While this may seem steep for a few DVDs, you actually get what you pay for. Consider all the "goodies" included with your Zumba Exhilarate DVD Experience purchase:
- It comes with a 7-disc DVD collection including a step-by-step introductory DVD, a basic 45-minute workout, a full-length dance party DVD, a DVD designed to help you strengthen and tone, and a 20-minute workout for when you're short on time. You will also receive two more DVDs with more dances and workout options.
- You also get Zumba fitness toning sticks that you can shake and twist as you dance.
- Program guide is also included.
If you want to try out the workout routine before investing serious cash into the full program, you can find the original four-DVD Zumba set new and used from vendors like Sears, Webstore and Bonanza. These DVDs won't have the updated music or moves, but you'll still get to hone your Latin dance skills as you exercise. The DVDs in this set include a beginners, advanced and power workout with progressively harder and faster dance moves. There's also an abs, buns and thighs DVD geared specifically to movements that tone these hard-to-slim areas of a woman's body.
One other option is the Zumba Fitness Total Body Transformation System DVD Set that comes with four DVDs that include six separate workouts and a pair of toning sticks. This system is available from retailers like Amazon.com. The only real difference between this four-DVD set and the seven-DVD set offered directly from Zumba is the step-by-step program and an additional "Mix" DVD that includes dance moves from around the world.
Video Game Options
In addition to traditional exercise videos, Zumba has released several video games that enable you to interact with an on-screen instructor as you perform Latin dance moves. Both the Nintendo Wii and the Xbox 360 Kinect offer this style of workout video. With more than 130 customer reviews at Wal-Mart.com, the Zumba Wii game received 4 1/2 stars. The Kinect game didn't fare as well, averaging 3 stars on Amazon.com after receiving more than 200 customer reviews.
Reviews of the Zumba program are almost always positive. Even major health organizations like WebMD back up the program's design as being beneficial for individuals who want their workouts to be fun. Negative reviews on sites like Amazon generally note difficulties in learning the dance steps and the clarity of the instructions, rather than the intensity of the workouts. If you're not used to using dance as a form of exercise, it may take a couple sessions before you get your hips loose and you begin to pick up the moves, but by investing a little money in a few Zumba DVDs, you may just discover yourself looking forward to your daily workouts.