First, a disclaimer. I'm a Zumba critic. But as an advocate. Not as a snob.
I attend classes wherever, whenever, whomever, just to see what's happening out there, who has the best routines, flavor, style, enthusiasm. I attend because I appreciate a great class and a great workout. And I especially attend so I can be a better Zumba teacher.
Coming into this fitness training thing late in life, I have a lot to learn and I'm never going to be the best. But I'm going to be enthusiastic, bring the party to it, and try to be as good as I can. There is only so much I can do about my 'limited memory banks' when it comes to remembering 100 percent of any routine. But the rest of the success of my class is up to me.
So it was interesting to really hear a firm message from Beto and the Zumba message on this latest Zin 41 DVD. No quibbling here.
• Don't introduce new moves between songs. Just start the dang song.
• Shut up and non-verbally cue.
Sounds simple. But it takes a fair amount of practice.
The voice-over on the one-on-one portion of the DVD was the best I've heard. It reminds us to start slow, set the step and style, get the class comfortable, then build on it.
It shows --- and tells us --- how to preview the next movement a beat before we start into it. No nuance. Real direction.
And it reminds us to watch the class, to keep each part of the routine simple until they become comfortable. Then go for it.
And it also reminds us that these routines aren't static. They are suggestions, not mandates and we're to use our own style and flavor as we teach. In fact, it's what will make us each personally successful.
And as a self-proclaimed Zumba critic, that's what I'm looking for. I want you to have your own style and flavor. But I don't want to be frustrated trying to figure out what the heck the routine is, which direction to go, what my arms and hips are supposed to be doing. Keep it simple, cue me clearly, and bring on your party. Then I'm sure to be back, no matter where your class is held.
Postcript: Having just returned from teaching a Zumba Gold class, watch for an upcoming post on the dilemma of cueing in Gold. It's not the same beast. Or is it?