Since its introduction in the 1990s, Zumba has become one of the most popular forms of workouts appreciated by countless people from around the globe because of easy-to-follow choreography, and fun and upbeat rhythms.
It was created by Colombian Beto Perez who visited Manila this month to hold his first-ever “fitness concert” in the country featuring his original Zumba moves.
Held at the Globe Circuit Events Ground, Perez gathered and led an astounding crowd of some 1,800 Zumba enthusiasts who all danced energetically and happily together.
“I love teaching Filipinos, because you are just like the people from my country, Colombia. Everybody loves music, everybody is happy! That is what Zumba is all about,” Perez announced, contended with the reception he received.
Before Perez’ much awaited Zumba concert, he first attended a press conference where he shared how he developed the fun workout.
“Zumba was created out of necessity and I never thought that it would be a phenomenon that will change my life and all the Zumba lovers around the world,” he said.
Perez began as a fitness instructor in his home city, Cali, Columbia. One day, we was about to teach aerobics but found out that he left his music tape at home. What he carried inside his backpack was his personal salsa and merengue tapes. In an instant, he popped those tapes into the music player and taught his first Zumba class ever.
“After the class, everybody was ecstatic and happy though perspiring thinking that what I just taught was a new dimension in aerobics class. From there, Zumba was born,” recalled the Zumba founder.
A dreamer and an innovator, Perez decided to bring Zumba to the United States even if he didn’t speak a single English word. He sold all his belongings and moved to Miami.
Tough times followed as Perez soon ran out of money. He even had to sleep in a park for two nights before he was able to land a job as an instructor at a prestigious local health club. Soon, his class featuring danceable aerobic routines performed to upbeat international rhythms became the most popular workout at the gym.
In 2001, Perez met Albeto Periman and Alberto Aghion and the three of them founded Zumba Fitness, LLC.
Today, Zumba is a global movement with the largest branded dance-fitness program in the world with 15 million weekly class participants in 200,000 locations across 180 plus countries.
“The story of Beto Perez and Zumba is not far from that of Circuit Makati. Both started out of nothing, but with creativity and the passion to thrive, something magnificent has been produced. Beto made it happen. Makati is making it happen,” praised Sheilla Aguilar, Circuit Makati’s project development manager.
Zumba 2015 was presented by Ayala Land in partnership with Beyond Passion.