Customer Review

239 of 246 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Zumba for Everyone, 2 Jun 2011
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This review is from: Zumba Fitness DVD Exercise Kit includes toning sticks (DVD)
Don't misunderstand what I'm going to say, Zumba Fitness is great, full stop. However, for those who are not so young, not so fit and/or have never learned dance steps before, the following may be helpful.

Firstly, if you can look in on a class run by a Zumba Instructor do, it will be an inspiration. I'll never forget the impression I had of Kay, flying sideways, co-ordinating head, arm and hip movements, all at same time. Fantastic! Unfortunately, this class had been running for 5 months and I knew I'd never be able to pick up the steps, so on April 1st I ordered my DVD set and have been practicing the Basic Workout for nearly 2 months.

The on-screen instructors first demonstrate the step they are about to teach and then break it down into three Easy Beat stages. Initially, I found the foot work was well taught in Easy Beats 1 and 2 but that working the arms and, to some extent, the hips was all thrown in at Easy Beat 3 with the thing going at full speed. It took me quite a while to pick up the arm and head movements in the second step taught. So, secondly, in the end I decided it was better to learn up the steps by watching the instructions repeatedly and then practicing from memory. I still do this even though the "whole body" instructions improve by the time you get to Cumbia and Reggaeton. This is fine. At home you're your own boss.

Thirdly, I would suggest adjusting the order in which you learn the steps. In the programme, 4 merengue steps are taught first. This is OK, but merengue is faster than salsa, which is presented third. The second set is of 3 quebradita steps and I really would recommend leaving these for later, say after Reggaeton. Quebradita Basic and Andole involve hopping and shoulder swiveling. It took me ages to get the balance right with the swiveling and both steps are energetic. I can just about manage quebradita andole now, albeit with my own version of the swiveling.

Fourthly, there's the music, particularly if you're practicing away from the screen. I bought Zumba Dance 2011 and found the heavy beat painful. The Rough Guides to Salsa and Merengue on the other hand are smashing and authentic. Salsa as I said before is slower than merengue. Last night I bebopped through my routine with Charlie Parker. At home, you can do whatever you want to. Slow the steps enough and it becomes a sort of Tai Chi.

The main thing is to do it at whatever level is right for you. Believe me, you'll breathe better, your joints will be looser, you'll be warmer. I practice on the kitchen tiles while I'm waiting for things to cook. I play whatever music I fancy or none. I wear loose clothing and a certain brand of comfort shoe. I'm 63 and have never learned a dance step before in my life.
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Showing 1-7 of 7 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 21 Sep 2011 13:35:17 BDT
bluebell says:
thx for ur comments.......they really helped understand this more fully.....been to one class and didn't know what hit me...LOL.....thought i'd buy these dvd's to practise at home.....although the class was hard...the next day i felt great...jan

In reply to an earlier post on 9 Jan 2012 18:11:46 GMT
Can't believe there aren't more comments on this very helpful review. Thank you for posting it. I went to my first Zumba class last night and got rather lost! (there seem to be two people in one body and they didn't talk to each other about the steps!)The idea of a comprehensive workout at home to spare my blushes really appeals.

Posted on 31 Jan 2012 05:23:18 GMT
Lisa Gordon says:
Only because there aren't enough comments about your very helpful review I decided to make one! Thanks for your advice, much appreciated. I'm buying these Zumba DVD's based on your review. Last Summer I did a few classes and enjoyed very much but can't be bothered going out on cold winter nights to gym, so these fit the bill. Let's go Zumba everybody.... :0)

Posted on 3 Feb 2012 11:53:05 GMT
S. McNab says:
Thank you for you very constructive review. I think I should give this a go.

Posted on 17 Feb 2012 11:02:13 GMT
I am concerned with some other comments regarding the discs being very short (and therefore not good value for money) and constantly stopping to translate instructions from Spanish to English. Has anyone also found this? There also seems to be kits ranging from 4 DVD set to 10 DVD set and I simply don't know which option is the best. Any one have any views on this?

Posted on 31 Jul 2012 18:25:02 BDT
Lovely review, helpful, informative and very concise - also WELL DONE THAT WOMAN - 63 and dancing while dinner cooks . . . like your style. I've done Zumba for a few years, just want to do a little at home too!

Posted on 25 Sep 2012 13:12:26 BDT
Joannem says:
Thank you so much for your very thorough review, one of the best IMO. I too think it's essential to buy the Dvd's as it is hard to keep up during a class with other more experienced people. With the dvd's you can learn the steps in the privacy of your own home, which helps enormously when attending a class.
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