Rebuttals for Common Excuses Not to Try Zumba

CaitlynZumba Instructor Tips

Charismatic Zumba Teacher in Class

Zumba classes can be a great way to lose weight and keep fit. Zumba is fun. Some moves even translate to the dance floor. What’s not to love?!

Some people have preconceived notions about Zumba, turning into excuses for them to attend a class. This article is intended to help instructors respond to common reasons potential clients give for not attending, so you can break down those walls that keep them from trying a class.

“I’m not coordinated.”

Many people think that they will go into a class and have all kinds of instructions shouted at them that they don’t understand. They assume if they don’t keep up, they’ll get embarrassed and feel as if they are not coordinated.

Instructors are encouraged to make Zumba class feel as if it’s a giant dance party. This must be conveyed to prospective clients. Remind them that they should approach each class just like a dance party where you don’t have to do every step correctly, and no one will care either way. Remind potential clients that they aren’t in a ballroom competition. Explain how you will provide instruction and use visual cues to keep everyone at pace. Especially stress how you aren’t there to reprimand them if they are out of step. Focus on the fun factor.

Additionally, advise that because Zumba starts with simple steps that can gradually be modified and built up over time, Zumba classes can actually help a person who believes he or she is uncoordinated to become more coordinated. This is because classes are designed to help people develop rhythm, technique and confidence over time.

Stress that Zumba classes are a safe and supportive environment where even people who believe they are not coordinated can work through routines with ease and assistance. And demonstrate the your responsibility in that by explaining that your job is to make sure no one is stuck in confusion.

“Isn’t Zumba just for women?”

Men Doing Zumba in Chile

Festival Zumba in Santiago, Chile

In a word, no. Zumba was created by a male Columbian dancer and choreographer Alberto Perez. In fact, there is a whole industry around zumba gear for men. However, like those who worry that they are uncoordinated and have two left feet, men sometimes feel as if they are in the spotlight when they are a minority among a room full of women. Assure men to get past their inhibitions and remind them of what they are missing: the ability to use every muscle in their body and get a cardio workout at the same time.

Men tend to favor cross-fitness when they look for a full-body workout. CrossFit programs can be high-intensity with a variety of strength and aerobic exercises, but not every day focuses on all muscles. A regular class of Zumba, a full-body workout, can provide total-body fitness, flexibility, cardiovascular health and more. While you’re not lifting weights in Zumba, you are working many muscles all at the same time. It can be considered a great core exercise as well because, over time, you use those abdominals, back and pelvic muscles.

“It isn’t for my age group.”

Zumba is being taught in more than 200,000 locationsZumba Students of a Variety of Ages in 180 different countries. Of course, you will find a number of different age groups and classes.

Zumba was initially designed for people over the age of 16, but later instruction was added for children, as well as seniors. Children as young as four years old can pick up the steps while age-appropriate music blares. These are usually called Zumba Jr. classes. Older clients might consider Zumba Gold instruction. These kinds of classes offer a safe, effective, and complete body workouts. While a participant will still get the party atmosphere associated with a Zumba class, the music and rhythms adapt to the clientele with typical steps being cha-cha, salsa, merengue and tango. Zumba Gold classes are often shorter, typically 30 instead of 45 minutes long. Taking such a class can be beneficial as a study in The New England Journal of Medicine found leisure activities, such as dancing, result in a reduced risk of developing dementia.

The health benefits of dancing and Zumba choreography can be beneficial to anyone, regardless of their age. In fact, another medical study, published in ScienceDirect found that people who participated in dance activities on a regular basis showed improvements in depression, anxiety, well-being, mood and overall body image.

“It’s not very challenging.”

On one end of the spectrum, there are those who fear Zumba is too complicated and they are not coordinated enough. Then there are those who question whether “just dancing” is enough of a challenge.

Health experts say if weight loss is what you seek, find activities that burn 600 calories an hour. A person can burn about 600 calories in a typical 45-minute Zumba class. Right there, you know you’re making an impact with this activity.

Additionally, Zumba classes mix it up with a variety of steps from cumbia to merengue and mambo to reggaeton. With the kind of choreography that might be seen on a nightclub dance floor, students get to experience the fun of dancing, but still have the challenge of keeping up with something new all the time.

Certainly, the longer a student stays in a class, the quicker he or she picks up the steps and, as sometimes happens with exercise programs, they feel they’ve lost the challenge. Good instructors will know when they need to make changes to step things ups or pick up the pace and increase the challenge for those students. But you can explain to those concerned that, like all workout classes, you quickly learn how to make it more challenging for yourself (picking up the pace, jumping higher, etc.).


Photo credits:

Feature photo by TeamMarche

Festival Zumba photo by Corporacion de Deportes de Penalolen

Young and Middle-aged class photo by JBLM MWR.

All photos are licensed under the General 2.0 license.