Sunday, October 3, 2010

My Zumba® Journey

Hi everyone! I had to take a bit of a break from writing, as my whole summer seemed to be spent on my feet enjoying all things physical. I hope your summer was amazing, refreshing and full of memorable events.

I want to write a bit about Zumba® and me. I recently went to the full day training to see if I had it in me to add this to my already packed teaching schedule. I have been interested in the concept, the worldwide rage for a long time, just never sure how I could fit it in to my life…but had a feeling I wanted to.

Those of you who know me know that dance is in my bones, my soul, and my spirit. I love to teach movement, love to see people begin tentatively, finally grasp a step and then embrace and perform it. Unfortunately, well actually fortunately, I have been teaching sooo long I have a developed a wide following of skilled exercisers and dancers. My classes have advanced in response to requests for more, which I love, but it also creates a wall between me and beginners, or those just wanting less intricate movement. It may often turn away those who are too nervous, too frustrated, and then too defeated to join in, or continue beyond one try. I do my best to break everything down, to be as inclusive as possible but the bottom line is it is “tough stuff”. Movements are introduced and embellished, combinations developed and linked together. It becomes a huge movement and memory challenge…. and better than any crossword puzzle at keeping the body and brain active in tandem. But I know it is not for everyone.

So this month I will be presenting some special Zumba® classes, alternating between the gyms. This has been a physical journey for me. I wish you could all be a fly on the wall watching me practice, following a DVD, and wondering why my hips aren’t going the right way on the right beat. Once again, I have made so many discoveries about muscle memory and learning patterns and am humbly reminded that what is easy to some is a mountain to others. I will be bringing to the table my own Scandinavian version of Latin moves with an uptight “ballet-trained” bent but I will say I am loving every minute of it. I am having to relearn body weight placement over the foot…it is totally different from my normal “aerobics” method of weight transfer. The good news is I have had to break this down to a science for me to relearn. When learning new skills my m.o. has always been to examine where individual body parts are relative to each other on any given beat. That’s all good until I try to look like I was born doing this. I am driving myself nuts. Well more nuts than usual.

So my challenge to you is to join in my madness. This workout is for all members, all levels. It is not complicated at all! We will have fantastic music, easy to learn moves, typically just 3 moves to each song, and each song stands alone…so that you can focus on your STYLE and dance away your stresses. It has only been a challenge for me because I want to be a great dancer and the fact that I have to lead all of you. The pressure only comes from myself. You won’t believe the mix of workout and fun!! You don’t need to be a dancer or “coordinated” to take this class. Your “inner dance” will develop over time and I promise a good laugh or two. Hope to see you there!! Kari

Zumba® with Kari
October 8th 5:30pm Queen Anne
October 15th 5:00pm Laurelhurst
October 22nd 5:30pm Queen Anne
October 29th 5:00pm Laurelhurst

(Further schedule will be determined based on response from members and my confidence in myself ☺)

Also be sure to check out Nathalye’s stellar Zumba® classes which have been packing in members for the past year.
She is from Columbia and has everything I don’t…she is an inspiration to me!
Queen Anne Saturdays at 11:30am and Tuesdays at 5:30pm
Laurelhurst Mondays at 5pm and Wednesdays at 6:15pm