Impacts of Latin beats are felt in your heart, soul, hips, and on your feet (no pun intended Gloria Estefan!). Born of Cuban descent, I was raised listening to salsa, merengue, and many other Hispanic tunes I was surely not a fan of. My mom would get upset at my comments and reluctant unappreciation of her heritage filled music. But, fast forward to 2003….she’d be so proud. That’s the year I became addicted to Zumba, a term coined around the globe as the life changing workout loved by millions. “Music is a universal language”, I heard Beto Perez the Zumba founder say once….and boy is he right! We may not speak the same language but we can definitely feel the beat of the music together.
Beto Perez, the Zumba co-founder is credited with this inspiring cultural exercise rocking across the globe but to me it’s not just the workout or the millions addicted to the energetic dance inspiring movement and relationships across borders, it’s the impact Zumba has had in the music industry. Zumba sparked magic on Latin record labels from Pitbull to Daddy Yankee, to Wyclef Jean to Don Omar, to Bad Bunny and countless artists reaping the benefits of partnering with Zumba lyrics in their music. Imagine, Zumba reaches 125 countries! These artists may have never reached those markets if it wasn’t for Zumba’s magnitude.
I’m a poster child vouching: if it wasn’t for Beto and his charismatic charm combined with his Zumba team of brainiacs conspiring to move the world, where would we be?!? Surely I wouldn’t have a playlist filled with reggaeton, bachata, and merengues, much less know the words to these songs I’m dancing to.
Life without Zumba is boring, if you haven’t tried it, visit your local gym or search YouTube for the countless of ZIN (Zumba Instructors) videos around the world teaching in-person or online. Miami peeps, have you visited CityZero, Beto’s newest venture featuring cutting edge music, design and technology under one roof? His gym is headquartered in the heart of Little Havana, steps away from his first home when he landed in Miami from Colombia to pursue his dream of changing the world with his Latin inspired dance moves.
Beto, felicidades! The world thanks you for your global contribution to music and the dance floor. And thank you for your trust brokering the City Zero deal! Bendiciones y salud amigo! And to all the Zumba Instructors and Zumba-loving dancers across the globe, keep on changing the world one dance step at a time.
More on Zumba’s impact on music at: