Zumba Beach Party comes to town

There's loud dance music and a bunch of youngsters swaying to the infectious beats, having a good time. Is it a party? Is it a work out? Oh it's Zumba — a form of dance workout, inspired by Latin music. This exercise programme started in the 1990s in Columbia, and over the years has traipsed its way all across the globe.

The Zumba class at Miss.Fit is in full swing. Zumba jammer and instructor Timmy Naidoo from Sydney leads a bunch of people as it moves to the front and back and twists and turns. “One… step front, Two… step back, Three… front, Four… back, and till the count of eight and back,” instructs Timmy, who is in Chennai for a special class. A dancer and personal trainer for over six years, Timmy tried out Zumba two years ago, and got hooked on to it.

“I am trained in ballet, tap, jazz, ballroom dancing and fitness training. So when you put the dances and fitness together, you get Zumba. It came to Australia, and I just had to try it. With Zumba, I guess it was the music — once you turn it on, you just feel like dancing,” she says. Originally, Zumba started with just Latin dance and music, and now it incorporates different styles such as hip-hop, reggae, flamenco, salsa, Bollywood and even bhangra. So, if you thought Daler Mehendi's ‘Bolo Ta Ra Ra Ra' rocked only Delhi, Punjab and the North, think again.

Very often, Timmy gets people who are clueless about dance attending her class. They do their own thing, and after a few classes get the hang of it and gradually get their steps right.

There, that's good news for people with two left feet. “People belonging to diverse age groups can do it. There is Zumbatomic for children, where the moves are a little different. Zuma Gold is for older people, Aqua Zumba and the regular Zumba.” Timmy believes this form is popular because it's just fun dancing and doesn't get monotonous. So, people don't realise they are actually working out.

“It's cardio-based, but not like aerobics, which is very structured. There is no specific step here. They keep changing all the time. Sometimes I choreograph my own sequence and the Zumba headquarters keep updating and sending us new tracks and steps,” she says. And because it's fun, it's a popular practice abroad to have Zumba parties where people get together and party and Zumba. Modelled on such events, Chennai will have its own Zumba Beach Party. So, ready for some surf, sand, music and Zumba?

LIKE TO PARTY?

The Zumba Beach Party organised by Miss.Fit will start at 4 p.m. on March 3 at Radisson BLU Temple Bay Mamallapuram Resort. The idea is to create awareness about Zumba and get more people to experience it. Timmy and instructors from Miss.Fit will interact with the audience and teach them steps. In addition, there will also be a fashion show by upcoming designers from NIFT, followed by a presentation by Sanjay M. Cherian, cardiovascular surgeon from Frontier Lifeline Hospital, snacks and a DJ belting out popular music.

Tickets are priced at Rs. 1,000 and Rs. 1,500 for adults and Rs. 750 for children, and are available at Landmark outlets, Pro Musicals (Egmore), Fruit Shop on Greams Road (Besant Nagar), Suxus (Express Avenue Mall), Miss.Fit Centre (Choolaimedu). For details, call 97907-08348.

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Priyadarshini PaitandyJune 28, 2012