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Students dance for healthier lives

Zumba instructor Angelo Tan leads an eager troop of La Verne students in a fast paced Zumba session for the Campus Activities Board’s fitness night on Nov. 21. The event provided students with a fun and sociable way of getting some workout time before the Thanksgiving holiday. Zumba has become a popular form of exercise because it combines various forms of dance movements. / photo by Andrew Vasquez

Kevin Parada
Staff Writer

Inside the Campus Center Ballroom last week, students were able to get their pre-Thanksgiving workouts in with Zumba instructor Angelo Tan.

Zumba is an exercise method that was developed in the 1990s that incorporates dancing with aerobics. Zumba is a Colombian word which means to move fast and have fun.

“It’s just a great full body workout and a lot of people like it,” personal trainer Marc Salvaggi said.

“We put on the event because we wanted to give people the chance to stay fit during the holidays when people tend to put on pounds,” spirit chair of Campus Activities Board, Oscar Bauman said.

Zumba mixes cardio intervals with resistance training making it an optimal exercise choice for those looking to meet weight loss goals.

Zumba also has the benefit of being a dance activity, which often makes people forget that they are working out so their sessions tend to be longer and more enjoyable.

“It’s a lot more fun to burn calories by dancing than by hitting the treadmill in the gym everyday,” Valerie Heatley a Zumba enthusiast said.

The dance-filled night started off with Tan showing the eight female students in attendance how to get a great workout by utilizing a mixture of salsa, hip-hop, samba, merengue, mambo and martial arts movements.

For the hour-long Zumba session, Tan moved his hips and used both upper body and lower body movements to give a full range of exercise. The students followed suit and emulated Tan’s every movement with much success.

After 20 minutes, students needed a rest because they were exhausted from the intense exercise.

“It’s a fun way to exercise and everyone can enjoy it; that’s why we chose it,” Bauman said.

Having only been introduced in the United States in 1999 by founders Alberto Perez and Alberto Perlman, Zumba has quickly become a popular trend among many females interested in fitness and aerobics.

“We have a huge number of girls that come in to the gym every week to take the classes,” Salvaggi said.

Kevin Parada can be reached at

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