Zumba
Diana Faulk, certified Zumba instructor, leads a class through some dance moves May 3 at Honeycutt Fitness Center at Fort Sill. The class meets often throughout the week at Honeycutt and Rinehart Fitness centers.

Perhaps the sounds of Rio and Carnival will come to mind as this week the Cannoneer looks at Zumba.

In this week's Fit 5 questionnaire, volunteer instructors, Ava Vallor and Diana Faulk, combine to infuse an extra boost of energy into Zumba classes Mondays and Wednesdays, 6-7 p.m., and Saturdays, 10:15-11:15 a.m. at the Honeycutt Fitness Center gym.

The class also meets Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 10:30-11:15 a.m. at Rinehart Fitness Center. Both ladies are, of course, certified Zumba instructors and passionate about the merits of the class. For more information on the class, contact Faulk through www.zumba.com/us website under 'Find an instructor' or Vallor at avamvallor@yahoo.com.

Cannoneer: What kind of workout can people expect who attend Ultimate Conditioning'

Vallor: Zumba is a fun way to exercise as it combines dance-type moves with Latin music. While getting your cardio in, it also works your legs, abs, arms and more. Each session is a mix of high- and low-intensity steps. Best of all it's easy to follow.

Faulk: People who apply themselves and follow along with the workouts can expect to burn calories; I have burned over 700 calories in just one, one-hour class. Zumba follows a class format which helps tone and sculpt the body in an aerobic/fitness fashion, helping achieve a unique balance of cardio and muscle toning by following Latin and international based fast and slow rhythms. The dance movements provide a firm cardio base and use steps that include body sculpting, which target areas such as the legs, butt, arms, core, abdominals and heart.

Cannoneer: Is this class for people of all fitness levels or an advanced class'

Faulk: The class is designed to work for people with all levels of fitness. Participants of any background or any age can start right away. Zumba's basic step formula make it easy for everyone. Even my husband who can't dance to save his life, can follow along with every single one of my dances. Regardless of your fitness level (dedicated exerciser or first-time gym-goer) you will have a great workout; Zumba is designed to provide the fat-burning benefits of an aerobic workout, muscular toning and the physiological and psychological benefits of interval training. Everyone will work muscles they've never worked before.

Cannoneer: What is your fitness teaching background and why do you volunteer your time to lead it'

Vallor: I have taught at Honeycutt since January and have been teaching at other locations for about a year. I volunteer to give back and and share my passion of exercise and a healthy lifestyle.

Faulk: I have only had my Zumba license for about a month, but I have participated in classes for almost two years. I volunteer to instruct because I love it so much. I am a stay-at-home mom and I have the time to do this, so why not' I enjoy fitness, staying in shape and am currently working on getting certified as a personal trainer through the National Association of Sports Medicine.

Cannoneer: If there was one thing you'd want to share with people concerning this class what would that be'

Faulk: The key to achieving fitness goals is to adhere to a fitness program. The fun and easy format makes it inevitable that participants are going to want to adhere to the program. As they keep coming back for the fun, they start to see their bodies change and start feeling better about themselves. These positive results help students quickly learn that Zumba is fun, easy, effective and that anyone can do it.

Vallor: People ask me what is Zumba all the time, and I tell them it 's a fitness program to the dance music of merengue, salsa, cumbia and reggaeton. It's fun, different and very effective. The class, in a sense, is like a big dance party where people can learn new dance steps, make new friends, smile and have fun. Just keep moving, and don't worry if you have two left feet, you'll you will be just fine.

Cannoneer: Anything else you'd care to add'

Vallor: I am 35 years old, moved here from Florida , work full time and go to school. I got my certification In Miami from Beto Perez, the designer of Zumba who taught my class. It was a great experience and will never forget it. I love when people come up to me after class and tell me it was fun or thank you; the best thing is when I see them come back for more.

Faulk: Zumba is "exercise in disguise," because participants are having so much fun, they don't realize they are exercising.

Page last updated Thu May 13th, 2010 at 12:35