Make a SPLASH
Evanna Ramly discovers the joys of Aqua Zumba.
Gyms and repetitive drills have never been my thing. But dance – that’s more like it! Anything with more fun and excitement in a workout. When I heard Aqua Zumba had hit Malaysian shores, I was psyched. Add aqua to Zumba, and you get dance kicks in a pool sans snazzy weights and imposing machines. Apparently the water pressure is enough to give you a total workout but how hard could it be?
Harder than I thought. Crazy traffic made me late for class, so I wasn’t exactly in the best of moods when I got into the pool. But there’s something so therapeutic about the cool water, not to mention the infectious smiles and laughter of those around me. Two minutes in, I wasn’t so sure anymore. Our instructor, Deno, had two rules: Keep your feet firmly at the bottom of the pool, and your arms in the water. It sounds simple but it’s not. With up to 50 people splashing around, you are in fact set afloat by those seemingly harmless little waves. I was fighting just to stay grounded half the time. At this point I was seriously reconsidering shelling out for a private class.
You also have the unbelievable resistance to contend with. I’ve been doing the cha-cha ever since I could walk so swift movements do not faze me easily; but underwater, it was a whole different ballgame.
Bear in mind, it was not like conventional Zumba, the fitness programme invented by Colombian dancer-choreographer Alberto Perez, who combined dance and aerobic elements for the fun workout loved by celebrities such as Jennifer Lopez and Victoria Beckham. With the water, I discovered that all those years of dance experience had failed me. My first underwater sweeps were so slow, I’m ashamed to admit the middle-aged lady next to me initially fared better. And every time Deno urged us to move faster I was tempted to get out of the pool and push him into the water. Maybe he’d be singing a different tune if he was in there with us instead of prancing around on dry land.
So imagine my surprise when after a brief tease, he jumped into the water, much to everyone’s delight. Next thing I knew,