Zumba a fitness trend of partying to weight loss


Members of a Zumba class boogie down at the Wilkes-Barre YMCA. Zumba is offered at the YMCA Monday through Saturdays for $1 for student members.

Morgan Evans, Staff Writer

It is apparent the “freshman 15” doesn’t disappear once finals are over. One can burn those extra calories and give into guilty pleasures. Instead, students can join in on the Zumba “fitness-party” craze that’s sweeping the globe one dance party at a time.

Zumba-fitness uses Latin-inspired aerobic dance moves derived from styles such as Salsa, Merengue, Hip-Hop and Reggaeton by blending sizzling international music with current pop, hip-hop and dance music.

Its various levels make it relatable for everyone, while the upbeat atmosphere helps participants forget they are torching up to about 800 calories per hour.

With over 12 million fans of the fitness-program worldwide, Zumba has been ranked No. 9 of the “Top 10 Fitness Trends” by the American College of Sports Medicine as of November 2011.

Why is it gaining such rapid popularity? Christy Galliford, fitness instructor and owner of The Studio 32 of Forrest Street, Wilkes-Barre says once one starts Zumba, it just becomes part of their lives. She says with Zumba she has lost over 30 pounds and dropped four dress sizes.

Zumba fans range from all different ages, shapes, and sizes and everyone is encouraged to join.

“The fitness-program is for anyone trying to lose weight, get in shape, or get toned,”says instructor Kimberly Baltruchitis.” In Zumba, the music grabs you and gets you up and moving and being in a class atmosphere pushes you to keep up, but at the same time you don’t feel pressured.”

Baltruchitis’s experience as a fitness-instructor shows that Zumba isn’t just any fitness class, it’s something more. The party-atmosphere lives on, but making the connection with people is what it’s really all about.

“It’s so great as a teacher to see people watch you. When they are smiling and having fun, it’s truly one of the best feelings ever.”

To finding a local Zumba class, visit http://www.zumba.com for more information about classes offered nearest to you. There are also classes offered at the Wilkes-Barre YMCA Monday-Saturday. Tickets can be purchased at the front desk of the YMCA.