Dance your way to fitness with these enjoyable classes
By David Greisman
You can lose weight while dancing to Taylor Swift — you can truly shake it off, shake it off — and you can waltz, samba, jive or disco it off as well.
There are several options at Columbia Association’s fitness clubs. No matter the genre of music or style of movement, dancing is a great way to burn calories and get in shape.
“Dancing is just fun. It takes you out of your everyday routine and makes you feel like you’re out with your friends or partner having a good time,” said Megan Cooperman, CA’s assistant director of group fitness. “It also works the entire body. You forget all your worries and all your troubles, and before you know it, the class is over, you’ve burned calories and had a great workout.”
While some people may prefer going to the gym, doing their thing on their own and then leaving, dance fitness classes add another element to the workout experience.
“When you’re letting loose and having fun, it becomes more of a social experience,” Cooperman said. “You’re going into a party zone.”
But if you’re a self-conscious wallflower like I once was, don’t worry about that. These classes are judgment-free, no matter your skill or fitness level.
“All of our dance fitness classes are for everyone, whether you prefer low-impact or high-impact,” Cooperman said. “It’s about doing the best you can, about working out and sweating. Everyone is going to look a little different doing it, but as long as you’re going for it and you’re moving and you’re enjoying it, that’s all that matters.”
It’s also a nice change of pace, a break from the tedium of jogging on a treadmill while still getting your heart pumping.
“You expend a ton of calories,” Cooperman said. “You’re extending and reaching and lifting and twisting. You’re engaging everything.”
Read below for a breakdown of what CA has to offer. And don’t be nervous! If it’s your first time attending any group fitness class, arrive early and introduce yourself to the instructor, who will give you an overview of what to expect.
Cardio Dance Party
Cardio Dance Party — everything is summed up in those three words. These classes combine all types of dance forms, depending on what songs the instructors pick, including hip-hop, pop, Latin, disco and more.
Cardio Dance and Tone
These classes are part dance fitness, part aerobics, and part toning, incorporating weights, resistance bands, and toning sticks.
Incredibly popular and incredibly fun classes are about 70% Latin music and 30% everything else. Zumba classes make for an enjoyable and engaging session with exciting rhythms and moves.
This modified class is a lower-impact, beginning version of Zumba, ideal for active older adults.
All the fun of Zumba with the same intensity of dance movements, but with the added support and resistance of water.
Created by Louis van Amstel of Dancing with the Stars, this class when incorporates real ballroom dance moves in a partner-free setting, sculpting muscles and burning calories and fat.
LaBlast and Tone
LaBlast and Tone combines dance fitness sets with full body toning using bands, weights and more.
Rhythm Rumble is an explosive cardio and strengthening system that combines dance with the Brazilian martial art Capoeira for a full-body workout.
Not a CA member? Visit ColumbiaFit.org to learn more, or speak with a membership advocate by visiting or calling Columbia Gym (6151 Daylong Lane, 410-531-0800); Supreme Sports Club (7080 Deepage Drive, 410-381-5355); or CA’s Customer and Member Service Center (6310 Hillside Court, 410-730-1801).