....is sweeping North Wiltshire....and beyond!
I've been going to Zumba with S and, more recently, K since before the summer holidays. You can visit the website to find a class near you and for their distinctively branded T-shirts, hairbands, trackies and DVDs.
Despite their rampant marketing drive, I have to say Zumba is one of the best exercise classes I've ever been to:
- there are no floor-based, uncomfortable abdominal exercises
- it's 2.4 miles away from where we live
- S picks me up and delivers me to the door
- it's dance based so I can wiggle my ample behind
- I can do most of the steps
- our instructor, Becky, is unfailingly cheerful and enthusiastic
- it's the funniest exercise class I've ever been to.
I've always felt that exercising 'en masse' is a peculiar activity. It reminds me of Korean State celebrations and dancing at home on carpets. At Zumba we samba and grapevine and merengue our way through music from around the globe but the fact is we're in a slightly musty village hall in our random selection of sportswear, shaking our bosoms as if we were in carnival in Rio. I just find it hilarious. I know I shouldn't and I know I should take my fitness seriously and respect everybody's right to lycra but I just can't help wondering what the aliens will make of us if they land at about 8.45pm on a Wednesday night in North Wiltshire. I imagine they'd think we were a slightly damp and quite co-ordinated species who liked loud noise.
This week the hall was divided into two distinct sections: by the door we had a gaggle of younger women all wearing copious amounts of eyeliner and barely breaking into a sweat. The other half of the room was populated by we ladies d'un certain age. Less makeup but clammier foreheads and, I have to say, better co-ordination and grander shimmies.
Some of us dance the tunes confidently and almost in time, mimicking Becky's oomph and pzazz - others, well, don't. What we all do, however, is have a fantastic time, whatever we take from it. You don't often see that many glowing women, smiling all the way back to their 4x4s after a night out at the gym. There must be something in it. Now, if only Becky would run a class in our village hall....