9 Surprising Benefits of Zumba

by John Staughton (BASc, BFA) last updated - Medically reviewed by Sarah Pledger (M.S., R.D.)

Zumba is one of the most popular exercise crazes in recent years, and with good reason! There are many health benefits of Zumba, including its ability to burn calories, work out the entire body, boost the metabolism, increase endurance, boost mood, aid coordination, and improve confidence.

What is Zumba?

Back in the 1990s, a Colombian dancer and choreographer developed a new dance fitness program that he called Zumba, which combines elements of dance and aerobics. Zumba combines different styles of South American-inspired dancing with rudimentary exercises that everyone can do. Zumba’s fun, engaging nature has made it one of the most popular new styles of exercise and is regularly practiced by over 15 million people in more than 175 countries.  The exercise classes are typically one hour in length and are led by a trained zumba professional. Combining fast and slow dance moves with elements of resistance training, it is a full-body workout that encourages social interaction, communal support of common goals, and enjoyment in the act of exercising. [1]

There are nine different standard classes of the zumba dance fitness program, which allows people of all ages, abilities, and goals to participate and improve their overall health. From young to old, healthy to out of shape, it promotes better posture, flexibility, metabolism, strength, and endurance. While there are countless fitness programs and strategies to stay in shape, this dance fitness style has some unique qualities that help it stand out from other competitors. Now, let’s take a closer look at the many benefits of zumba. [2]

A group of smiling young people doing zumba on a wooden floor in a fitness center

Fun exercises help you to not give up. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Benefits of Zumba

Amazing benefits of zumba include the following:

Burns Calories

The key component of zumba that makes it so effective is its combination of aerobic exercise and resistance training. The fluctuation from controlled movements to rapid, high-intensity cardiovascular exercise keeps your metabolism in high gear for an hour at a time. This hour of Zumba can equal anywhere from 300-600 calories burned, depending on your age, sex, and workout intensity. If you’re looking for a high-efficiency fat-burning approach, this workout style is ideal! [3]

Promotes Endurance

Continuous movement while working out can be tough, and with the common breaks and cool-down periods of strength training, you don’t build up as much endurance as a long-duration and continuous workout. Zumba’s standard hour-long classes get your body accustomed to ongoing exercise and energy expenditure, which can make working out easier, more enjoyable and burn more calories overall. [4]

Improves Posture

The movements involved in zumba aren’t what most workouts include, and by combining movements of samba, salsa, merengue, and mambo, practitioners will be working out unique muscle groups and accustoming their joints to more unusual movements and stretches. This reduction in tension and improved range of motion boosts posture and flexibility in regular users. [5]

Boosts Confidence

The social aspect of zumba is different than most workout situations. By improving your dance moves and your physical health in a fun, informal setting like a zumba class can make you feel more comfortable with your body, which improves self-confidence, and encourages you to return for another workout soon! Zumba is an exercise combined with self-expression, celebration, and exploration of one’s own body. [6]

Increases Coordination

You might not think of the importance of coordination, particularly when we are young and this ability seems to come naturally. However, as we age, coordination often suffers, but the multi-tasking elements of zumba, as well as its graceful, dance-like motions, can keep your body in prime physical shape – well balanced and unified. Falls are one of the biggest health dangers as we age, and Zumba assures we keep our balance, coordination, and vigor as we age gracefully. [7]

Reduces Anxiety

If you’re looking to boost your mood, going to the gym isn’t always the best idea. It can be an intimidating and frustrating experience, which often feels like a competitive atmosphere. However, zumba is a social, communal-based activity, which causes the release of endorphins and neurotransmitters that can improve mood and eliminate stress hormones in the body. [8]

Full-body Workout

As a dance-based form of fitness, Zumba acts as a full-body workout, engaging almost every muscle group of the body in a smooth, comprehensive fitness regimen. This makes your workout more efficient, and helps you with creating a completely toned body, just like a professional dancer! [9]

Fast and Accessible

With more than 200,000 class locations across more than 175 countries, it is easy to find a nearby location offering a range of classes. Furthermore, since most classes are only an hour in length (and some are even shorter), it isn’t a major time commitment for those looking for a low-intensity workout habit. [10]


You can personalize your Zumba strategy to perfectly match your abilities and goals. Offering multiple levels of difficulty and styles of dance fitness, this fitness approach appeals to a wide audience, and as their fitness increases, they can easily switch to a more intense level. [11]

DMCA.com Protection Status
About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, publisher and photographer with English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana (USA). He co-founded the literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and now serves as the Content Director for Stain’d Arts, a non-profit based in Denver, Colorado. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

Rate this article
Average rating 4.0 out of 5.0 based on 274 user(s).