I'm a beginning writer with a Brisbane Bucket-list and a desire to see it all and report back.
Published February 19th 2015
Jump, shake, wiggle and dance your way to fitness
I am currently on the hunt to find exercise programs that allow its participants to lose weight, get fit, build strength but that also ensure there is no getting bored and giving up. Last night I think I stumbled onto the ultimate exercise class that allows me to tick each and every one of those boxes. Last night I wiggled, shook, kicked and jumped my way to fitness, with the amazing team running Zumba in Brisbane.
If you haven't done Zumba before it is an exhausting but exhilarating way to get the blood pumping and to shed those kilos. It is kind of like a mix between aerobics and dance and you never ever ever stop moving and shaking. The music is greatly varied so in your 45 minute session you are going to find a least one song you love. In our recent session I heard some Latin music, a bit of Bollywood, possibly some African tunes, and Jay Z's familiar Hip Hop beats pour from the speakers.
Shankkar and Navvii, the amazing duo running Zumba in Brisbane, are currently holding classes in Towong, Jindalee, Kenmore and Milton perfect for Brisbane's West-siders. Their sessions are each 45minutes, with no breaks or pauses, instead participants are encouraged to grab water and a towel (both absolutely essential) anytime they are feeling a little out of breath. Of course I had to grab a drink a few times during the workout, but I stepped off the dance floor for no less than 10 seconds… I didn't want to miss out on any of the fun.
My Zumba buddy, Jo, rocking it.
Zumba has always been my favourite way to exercise, and I was crushed when my old gym replaced it with dance (it actually is one of the reasons I left). Zumba with is different to regular classes because having twice the instructors than a normal class defintly has its benefits. The most pertinent one being that whilst one half of the dynamic due is jumping up on stage, the other is down in the crowd helping to pump participants up. This also allows those struggling with the moves to get a closer look. Also if any steps involve turning around in a circle, no matter which angle you are facing, you are going to be able to see a dancing instructor guiding you through the moves.
Shankkar and Navvii are also extremely friend people who both took the time to get to know us, asking us non-workout related questions such as our friendship and work places. I'm also 100% certain that they knew the names of every single person in the room. This was confirmed when one woman had to leave early and Navvii yelled from the stage, "Bye Caroline!" So not only do you gain some great exercise buddies from joining up, I'm pretty sure we gained a couple new friends.
If however you are like me, you can always take along a friend. I grabbed my work buddy Jo and bought her to the class. As I've mentioned Zumba is my jam, but Jo was new to the whole process. I was constantly checking on this Zumba newbie to see her stumbling through the moves with a giant smile on her face. It can take a few lessons to teach the body how to move in Zumba, but it certainly wasn't going to take Jo more that amount of time to be convinced this is where she belonged. As we left, she gushed about how much fun it was, and as the sweat poured down our faces she even said that Shankkar and Navvii's class didn't feel like work because she was having so much fun. So even if you are a Zumba novice, it is definitely worth giving one of the classes a go.
The classes are also really well priced. Students can undertake 3 lessons for only $20. I've never heard of any gym than can offer classes for under $7; I'm considering enrolling back into university so I can jump on that deal. Adults can join in for a casual session for only $12 or grab a 10 class pass (that can be used at all locations and doesn't have an expiry date) for $100, which is also extremely inexpensive in the world of exercise.
So grab a towel, water bottle, some good shoes, a good friend (or come alone and make new ones) and shake your booty along with the rest of us who are getting fit and having fun with Shankkar and Navvii at Zumba in Brisbane.
I used to go to classes with Shankkar & Navii when they held classes in the city. They were fantastic. Great variety of music & lots of fun. I live on the opposite side of town to their current classes so can't go to them. For those of you living in the area of their classes, I highly recommend them.