The Carroll Centre just recently started a Zumba class for teenagers who are there for the summer. The class is held twice a week on Wednesday and Thursday evenings, and is taught by two instructors, Andria Lindberg and Cheryl Umana.
Despite some initial reluctance by the teens, which the Carroll Centre staff predicted would happen, they were able to quickly learn both the verbal and physical cues from their instructors and were given plenty of encouragement as they began to memorize the moves. Through this encouragement, the students learned the dance moves quickly and really started to enjoy themselves.
Zumba, for those who are unaware of the newly-popular program, is a Colombian dance fitness routine that was created in the early nineties by Alberto Perez. Zumba focuses on a combination of dance and aerobic moves that are blended together into a choreography that is synced to Latin music. The program employs many different styles of Latin dance like samba, salsa, and meringue, but also things like hip-hop and even martial arts. The routines are designed to give the participants a very comprehensive workout while having a lot of fun at the same time, which has helped build the program’s popularity. Currently, there are about 12 million people taking weekly Zumba classes in over 110,000 locations in 126 countires.
When not doing Zumba, the students at the Carroll Centre learn how to cook, computer skills, and learn to run errands. In addition, they are exposed to horseback riding and fencing, among other activities.
Lindberg feels that anyone can learn Zumba and she really appreciates that there are classes for all ages and skill levels, and that the routines are easily adaptable.
Lindberg became interested in teaching people with special needs while being a guest physical education exercise instructor for her daughter’s class. Kylie, 12, is in an inclusion classroom and has Epilepsy with additional disabilities. Since then, she has taught a variety of disability groups and will continue to use Zumba as a tool to foster good exercise habits.
Have any of you taken a Zumba class? Let us hear about it in the Reader’s Forum.