Zumba Dance Guide
Zumba & Merengue
Merengue is fast pace
rhythm from the Dominican Republic Merengue moves include the march as it
has the tempo of marching music. There are three basic movements to the Merengue
the Side Basic Movement, the Forward Basic Movement and the Back Basic Movement
The music and the basic step may be counted: 1, 2, 3, 4, Traditional Merengue
music is played on accordion, saxophone, tambora drum, box bass and güira. For
the basic step, partners are in the closed position and step from side-to-side
in what is known as ‘paso de la empalizada’. This, in turn, moves the hips
accordingly. The steps are kept small and as a result turns should be slow and
graceful. The Merengue march can effectively tone the waist. Beto teaches by
asking people to march like they need the toilet. When doing this, people will
naturally tighten the abs and the movement in the hips becomes more pronounced.
Zumba & Salsa
Salsa is a blend of many
especially Cuba. Salsa had a
distinct beat of1,2,3, hold - repeat and is usually a fast tempo.
There are a few basic steps of Salsa the most common is the three step in each
four-beat measure. The beat on which one does not step might contain a tap or
kick, or weight transfer may simply continue with the actual step not occurring
until the next beat.
The key instrument for the core
groove of a salsa are the congas, timbales, piano, tres guitar, bongos, claves.
Salsa is normally a partner dance, although there are recognized solo forms such
as solo dancing where steps called a "shine" are used this usually involve more
complex footwork patterns than the usual salsa basics. Fast Salsa footwork is
perfect for cardio training.
Zumba & Cumbia
The Cumbia is known a rhythm from Columbia but has
influences from Africa and Europe. Cumbia is often associated with a tropical or
creole flavour to the music. Its shuffling steps are attributed to African
slaves who wore leg irons and chains during the eighteenth century. Cumbia is regarded as ‘fun-to-dance’ dances The most common Cumbia
moves in Zumba are the "Sugar Cane" and the sleepy leg.
The Basic Cumbia count is 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 The instruments used in playing
Cumbia included flutes, maracas, African drums, the guitar, clave, accordion,
bass guitar. This cumbia step quickly starts toning the thigh area.
Zumba & Reggaeton
Reggaeton is originally Jamaican influenced
with dancehall moves and rapping hip hop lyrics. The music contains a heavy bass drum beat, with a primary instrument
being a Reggae style drum. Reggaeton dance moves are sexy, very
popular and are often seen in many dance clubs. Popular moves in Zumba are
Reggaeton stomp and the Destroza, Destroza means destroy and is great for the
bum and waist.
Zumba & Flamenco
The rhythm from Andalusia Spain with
Gypsy influences. Flamenco includes is highly-expressive handclapping, finger
snapping, sweeping arm movements and rhythmic feet stomping. There is a lot of
upper body movements Flamenco is a strong rhythm with a lot of different arm
moves. Flamenco usually features a solo guitarist with a 6 or 12 beat rhythm.
Perfect for targeting the shoulder area, upper back and to help good posture
Zumba & Samba
Samba lively, rhythmical
dance from Brazil. Samba is known for its sexy hip movements. It is traditional dance
at festivals and celebrations in Brazil.
Samba music includes Brazilian musical instruments called tamborim, chocalho,
reco-reco and cabaca. The basic movement involves a straight body and a bending
of one knee at a time. The feet move very slightly - only a few inches at a
time. The rhythm is 2/4, with 3 steps per measure. In Zumba the moves are
high-energy dynamic and have the carnival feel good factor great for working the
Zumba & Belly dancing
Belly dancing can be traced back at least 2000
Egypt and the Middle East. Music for belly dancing usually includes a lot of
percussion instruments. an Egyptian orchestra typically consists of violins,
accordions, frame drums, finger cymbals, and flutes with many different rhythms.
Most of the movements in belly dancing involve isolating different parts of the
body (hips, shoulders, chest, stomach etc.) Moves you can easily learn in Zumba
are the Shimmy vibration of the hips. Hip hits a staccato movement of the hips
out from the body. Undulations fluid movements of the hips or of the chest in a
rolling fashion. There is a focus upon the core muscles and it works at toning
and shrinking that waistline and abdominals as well as strengthening the pelvic
floor. Shaking and Shimmy's are great fun and some Zumba enthusiasts wear jingly
hip belts to add to the fun.
Zumba & Cha Cha Cha
Originating in Cuba as a
variant of the Mambo and Rumba its a light and bubbly dance and easy to learn.
The Cha Cha requires small steps and lots of hip motion, as it is danced in 4/4
time. The fourth beat is split into two, giving it the characteristic 2,3,4 & 1
the "One, two, cha cha cha" rhythm. The Cha Cha in Zumba lifts the
spirits and the steps are easy to pick up.
Zumba & Bachata
Bachata is from the Dominican
Republic. The music is based on the guitar with percussion provided by maracas and other
instruments such as claves, bongo drums and marimbulal The bachata is sometimes
referred to as the "blues music of the Dominican Republic.
Bachata count is a slow styles is
1,2,3, hold and moving within a small square (side, side, forward and side,
Zumba & Rumba
The Rumba Originating in
Cuba was raunchy and over time has been modified slower and more refined
version. It is a dance of seduction between an alpha male and a shy teasing
female. Rumba is played on a variety of instruments such as congas, shakers and
The Rumba is considered to be the
sensual of the ballroom dances. The basic rhythm of the Rumba is in 4/4
time quick-quick-slow with distinctive side-to-side hip movements, very
small steps are taken, with the women producing a very subtle tilting of the
hips by alternately bending and straightening the knees.
Zumba & Tango
Tango dance originated in the working-class port neighbourhoods of Buenos Aires,
Argentina. Tango is earthy and dramatic and Tango steps like walks, almost
stalking nature are Quick-Quick-Slow. Movements are slow and slithery then sharp
and stacatto, there are quick foot flicks and sharp head snaps. Argentinian
Tango music includes the bandoneon, often accompanied by a small band, of a
piano, guitar, one or two violins. Parkinson's sufferers given tango classes
showed improvements in balance and other measures not seen in another group of
patients given regular exercise classes, The researchers said that while dance
in general may be beneficial, tango uses several forms of movement especially
relevant for Parkinson's disease patients including dynamic balance, turning,
initiation of movement, moving at a variety of speeds and walking backward, It
has also been suggested that tango makes people feel more relaxed, sexier, and
less depressed, and to increase testosterone levels, for this reason the simple
Tango steps in Zumba are perfect for older dancers.
Zumba & Hip Hop
Hip hop music originated as
improvisations made to existing music by party DJs consisting of a stylized
rhythmic music often with rapping.
Hip-hop dance as seen today is a
broad category that incorporates a variety of old and new urban dance styles.
The music is modern upbeat party music and the steps are easy and fun to learn.
Today hip-hop dance is recognized by dancers and trainers alike as an alternate
form of exercise. Many of the hip-hop movements in Zumba isolate the abs.
Zumba & Axe
Samba Axé is a solo dance that
started in 1992 during the Brazilian Carnival season in Bahia when the Axé
rhythm replaced the Lambada. For years it became the major type of dance for the
North east of Brazil during the holiday months. The dance is completely
choreographed and the movements tend to mimic the lyrics
Samba Axé has no formal set of steps or routines. It's a very energetic
kind of dance that mixes elements of Samba no pé and aerobics.
Zumba & Mambo
Mambo originally from Cuba, is a
high energy vibrant and complex dance with infectious rhythms. The Mambo uses a
4/4 beat and is counted as "quick-quick-slow," with the foot moving on the
second beat. The music is set by a variety of percussive instruments, including
maracas. In Zumba Mambo can improve the reflexes and timing and Dance improves
our memory by making us recall steps, making it a great mental exercise for our
Zumba & Calypso
Calypso developed during the 19th
century with roots in Trinidad's Carnival with steel drum sounds The music is
always in standard 4 beats to a bar. The music is happy and very infectious and
has a distinct holiday feel. Calypso dance in Zumba tones core and mid section
of the body with high-energy aerobic steps and hops strengthen your
Zumba & Bollywood
Bollywood is the informal name
used for the Hindi-language film industry based in Mumbi. Bollywood dancing is a
combination of classical Indian dance, and folk dancing such as Bhangra. It's
fun and express what the music means. The movements are energetic with sharp
controlled expressive movements. Bollywood Dancers can project emotion by using
their eyes, hand gestures, fingers, and footwork. The distinctive Indian music
is made using Sitar, Tabla, drums, flute, guitar and violins. Zumba moves for
Bollywood are great fun and often use a lot of arm work so great for toning
Zumba & Quebradita
Is a Mexican dance which
traditionally involves the man performing amazing lifts and turns with the
woman. The instruments used in for this dance are trumpets, snares, clarinets,
trombones, tuba, tambora, and percussions. The solo dance could be described as
being reminiscent to cowboy style line dancing. In Zumba the moves are energetic
and tone the legs with hopping and turning.
Zumba & African Beats
Traditional dance in Africa is in
groups to drums and chants. There are many forms of African tribal dances but
basically the steps are often simple and rhythmic with turns, hops and stomps.
It is extremely enjoyable to perform in Zumba and the spirit of joyfulness from
the music shines through.