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Archive for the ‘Lifestyle’ Category

Wear Red Day 2/2 9:30 am

Posted by ZumbaContraCosta on January 27, 2018

Friday is Wear Red Day

Join us this Friday Feb 2nd 9:30 am 

for heart-pumping Zumba fun & fundraising for American Heart Association – Greater Bay Area.

1948 Oak Park  Blvd., Pleasant Hill

RSVP: Janice@ZumbaContraCosta.com

415.518.2202

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Ashley Judd’s Keynote – Zumba Convention

Posted by ZumbaContraCosta on September 4, 2015

Ashley Judd Speaks at Zumba Convention 2015

Recently I wrote about Ashley Judd dancing Zumba for the crowd during her keynote speech.  Here is the video of part of her keynote address & some dancing with her own Zumba instructor, as well as Beto Perez, founder of Zumba.

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Janice leads Fitness Break at Heart Association’s Wellness Symposium

Posted by ZumbaContraCosta on August 25, 2015

Janice leads Zumba fitness break at today’s

American Heart Association Wellness Symposium in San Francisco.

Janice Litvin leading Zumba break AHA

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Zumba Founder Beto Perez’s 5 Tips For Taking Your First Class

Posted by ZumbaContraCosta on April 5, 2013

As seen on fitsugar.com

Zumba Founder Beto Perez’s 5 Tips For Taking Your First Class

When it comes to taking your first Zumba class, no one may know better about the anxieties students face than someone who’s taught thousands around the world — the inventor of Zumba himself, Beto Perez. “Sometimes people see the class through the window and they feel a little intimidated because they see the coordination. . . [and] think that they need to know choreography before,” he says. “In Zumba we don’t have levels; we don’t have beginners, intermediate, or advanced. We prepare the instructors in a way that anybody can do it.” Convinced? Here are Beto’s five expert tips for making your first Zumba class a success.

Beto Perez Zumba

  1. Choose the right class: Any Zumba class will offer something for beginners, but Beto especially recommends the newest offering, Zumba Sentao, which uses a chair as your “dance partner” to help you work out. Having that anchor point can help beginners feel more comfortable when they try a class, Beto suggests.
  2. Get there early: If you’re new to Zumba, rushing in late is not an option if you don’t want to feel disoriented and discouraged. “You need to be at the beginning of the class because the warmup is one of the most important parts of the class,” advises Beto. And after the 10-minute warmup, the instructor starts you out with simple steps using an easy rhythm like merengue or cha cha cha, which is why “it’s so important you start at the beginning of the class,” he says.

Keep reading for three more expert tips.

  1. Focus on your legs: Feeling a bit uncoordinated? If you get lost when the instructor shows you a movement to do with your arms to go along with your legs, skip the arms part. Focusing on just following the leg movements will ensure you still get an effective workout. “We understand it’s hard,” Beto says. “Don’t worry.” After a few classes, you’ll feel more comfortable with adding arm movements to your dance steps.
  2. Dress for success: You’ll feel more confident and in control if you wear clothes you are comfortable in, so opt for an outfit that affords you lots of movement, along with comfortable shoes. Beto says he sees people arrive to class in ballroom shoes, thinking it’s a dance class “but they need to remember that this is a fitness class — [wear] tennis shoes,” he says.
  3. Take a break: It’s important to know when you need to take a time out, Beto says, especially if you’re finding it hard to breathe. “If you are red in the face, you need to take a break and drink water,” he advises.

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Dancing away the morning for Walnut Creek CERT

Posted by ZumbaContraCosta on July 3, 2011

What better way to spend a weekend morning than to shimmy & shake to Zumba’s Latin beats, while raising funds for Walnut Creek CERT (Community Emergency Response Team).  On June 18th Zumba Contra Costa’s Janice Litvin, accompanied by Claudia Lira, Parandis Banifatemi, & Lynda Penados, took CERT supporters, including Walnut Creek Mayor Cindy Silva and WC CERT’s director, Gayle Vassar all the way to a Salsa battle at the beautiful Shadelands Art Center. 

Fema-endorsed CERT trains community volunteers to respond during a disaster in areas such as:   fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, disaster medical operations, and most important, communication.  For more information about upcoming CERT trainings or to become a volunteer, contact cert@walnut-creek.org.

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Shed some pounds with Zumba’s DVD Set

Posted by ZumbaContraCosta on July 10, 2010

Now you can shed the pounds and have a blast while you’re doing it! It’s easy with the Zumba® Fitness Total Body Transformation System DVD Set.

Click here to Purchase – Zumba Fitness Total Body Transformation System DVD Set

Zumba Weight Loss DVD Set

Zumba Total Body Transformation DVD Set

Loaded with red-hot dance steps, pulsating Latin rhythms and easy-to-follow routines, this invigorating dance-fitness “party” will have you movin’, groovin’ and shakin’ the weight off to the sexy, exotic rhythms of salsa, cumbia, samba, merengue and more! Work your body from head to toe with four DVDs and six exhilarating workouts that teach you all the basics and hit your favorite targets, like your core, thighs and abs. You also get maraca-like Toning Sticks to add some muscle to your body sculpting routines. Now’s the time! Get ready to “Join the Party” and see a whole new side of yourself!

Zumba Fitness Total Body Transformation System DVD Set includes: 1) Zumba Fitness Basics Workout;  2) Zumba Fitness 20-Minute Express Workout;  3) Zumba Fitness Sculpt & Tone Workout;  4) Zumba Fitness Cardio Party Workout;  5) Zumba Fitness Live! Workout;  6) Zumba Fitness Flat Abs Workout;  7) 2 Zumba Fitness Toning Sticks

Posted in Aerobics, Cardio dance, Dance Fitness, Exercise, Fitness, Gifts, Health, Heart Health, Lifestyle, Music, Sports, Weight Loss, Weight Management, Zumba | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Zumba Warms Up Weight Watchers’ Walk-it Challenge

Posted by ZumbaContraCosta on June 6, 2010

Janice & WW Territory Mgr., Jeanne O’Brien

Today Janice of Zumba Contra Costa prepared walkers for the Weight Watcher Walk-it Challenge in Pleasant Hill (San Francisco’s East Bay area).  Fleet Feet of Pleasant Hill hosted the walkers by supplying t-shirts, water, and healthy snacks.  Starting at 7:30 a.m. Janice warmed and toned the 300 Weight Watchers’ muscles and prepared them for their 5K (3.1 miles) walk-it challenge around the town of Pleasant Hill in Contra Costa County.  Everyone finished the walk thrilled and energized, while feeling their endorphin-rush.

Janice teaches Zumba Fitness classes and Zumbatomic (Kids’ Zumba) in Walnut Creek, Pleasant Hill, Lafayette & Concord.   Janice@ZumbaContraCosta.com

WW Leader, Elena Summers

Janice

WW Leader, Marianne Benedetti

Posted in Aerobics, Cardio dance, Community building, Dance Fitness, diet, Exercise, family, Fitness, Health, Heart Health, husband-wife activities, Lifestyle, Music, Sports, Weight Loss, Weight Management, Zumba | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Meet Beto Perlman, CEO, Zumba Fitness

Posted by ZumbaContraCosta on May 23, 2010

Born for Business

Zumba co-founder, Beto Perlman

Zumba Co-founder, Beto Perlman

Published: May 21, 2010

My great-grandfather moved from Jerusalem to Colombia at age 20 because he heard there were business opportunities there. He went from town to town selling textiles on horseback although he didn’t speak a word of Spanish.

When I was about 6, I had a watch that had a game on it. I loaned it to a classmate on weekends, and he gave me money in exchange. One weekend my mom me asked where my watch was. When I told her, she called the boy’s mother to apologize and made me return all the money. My father was proud. He said I invented renting.

It was a dangerous time in Colombia in the 1980s. Every time the government would pursue the drug dealers, they’d retaliate and bomb government buildings and public places. We’d hear the popping sounds at school. My dad owned a factory that made leather goods, and when I was 9 we were glad to live in the United States for six months while he opened a distribution center in Florida.

I moved back to the United States in 1994, and in 1998, I graduated from Babson College in Massachusetts with a B.A. in finance and information systems. Working as a management consultant for a while, I analyzed call centers for a bank to determine the effectiveness of its TV advertising. It was boring, but I learned about direct response marketing, which would come in handy later.

When I went home to Colombia to visit, my mother would rave about a fitness class she was taking with Alberto Perez, whom everyone calls Beto, that involved a dance routine set to Latin and international music.

In 1999, I created a business conference called Latin Venture with a partner, where Latin American entrepreneurs presented their business plans. I got companies like I.B.M. and Telefónica to sponsor it, and I lined up venture capitalists as speakers and panelists. We held the conference in Miami.

Then three partners and I created Spydre Labs, a business incubator for Latin American entrepreneurs with ideas for Internet businesses. We raised several million dollars and invested in the start-ups we created.

Then the tech bubble burst, funding dried up, and I had to let everyone go. I decided to return what remained of the investors’ money because my father always taught me that if you’re honest and respectful, it will come back to you tenfold.

My parents had moved to Miami by then, and I had dinner at their house that night. My mother suggested that I talk to Beto about starting a business related to his fitness routine. He had also moved to Florida and was giving fitness classes here.

He and I met and discovered that neither of us had any money. We decided to start a company anyway, and I asked Alberto Aghion, one of my best friends from childhood, to join us. We wanted to sell home fitness videos directly to consumers, so one night we set up on the beach and had a videographer film a fitness class. We started looking for joint venture partners for producing videos we could market on television.

Along with a TV infomercial, the home videos introduced our concept to the public, and when people called wanting to be trained as instructors, the company took off. Zumba Fitness is now in about 50,000 locations in 75 countries. This year we’re introducing a game for Nintendo Wii, Xbox and PlayStation.

I’ve learned that if you don’t take a risk, that’s a risk in itself. I’ve also learned that your customers are your boss. Our main customers are our instructors, who pay for training. They have their own community on our site, and I listen carefully when they tell me what we need to do in the future.

As told to Patricia R. Olsen.  (Appeared in NY Times.com 5/21/2010)

Posted in Aerobics, Dance Fitness, entrepreneurs, Exercise, Fitness, Gifts, Health, Lifestyle, Music, Zumba | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Zumba Represented at LA Clippers Game

Posted by ZumbaContraCosta on March 9, 2010

Janice (Zumba Contra Costa) doing Salsa at LA Clippers game

Zumba represented at LA Clippers What happens when 100 Zumba Instructors show up for a Clippers   basketball game in LA?  Why, dance of course.  And dance we did.  On March 6th the music played, Zumbando por Un Sueno, one of Zumba’s trademark salsa songs, and Zumba instructors who came from as far away as San Francisco, San Diego, & Tijauana, moved like a flock of graceful gazelles, perfectly in unison, to the salsa beat.

Thanks to Alfredo & Aileen Padilla who led us to this rare occasion, representing Zumba at an NBA game.  Alfredo & Aileen were poised and ready when we showed up for our rehearsal at noon that day.

They were so organized that they even brought their own sound system with microphone for our rehearsal.  The Clippers staff were also supportive and efficient; every detail was considered and handled.  Everything went off without a hitch, from where to stand to how to get there in less than 60 seconds.

Once the actual performance time arrived, the thrill was so strong that we checked our minds at the gate and just swished & shimmied to the salsa beat, like we do so well.  Seeing the swell of pink Zumba tank tops moving as one, in the video afterward, made the experience even more surreal.  Having my husband and teen-aged son there to cheer me on and share in the thrill epitomized the event for me.

Afterwards as I walked through Staples Center, home to both the Clippers & the Lakers, I felt a new, deeper bond every time I passed a Zumba pink tank top.

For me, even with all of my dance background, this experience exceeded all others.  My family are huge NBA fans, especially my son, my niece, Lauren & my mother, Sylvia.  Combined with my love of dance, instilled by my mother at an early age, and my love of Zumba, dancing at a Clippers game was a dream come true.  Thank you, Clippers & a big thank you to Beto and everyone at ZO for creating this opportunity to represent Zumba in this way.  “Zumbaaa!”

Zumba Contra Costa - Clippers game

Zumba Dancers Perform at LA Clippers

Zumba Contra Costa at LA Clippers

Zumba dancers rehearse for LA Clippers show

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Meet the Man Behind Zumba: Beto Perez

Posted by ZumbaContraCosta on October 30, 2009

He built a global empire helping people have fun and burn calories.

It took four trips from his native Colombia to Miami before Beto Perez got his big break. The fitness and dance instructor simply wanted to bring his workout classes to America. But with little money and even less English, he couldn’t get fitness-center managers to watch his Latin-dance-inspired videos.

Beto Perez Zumba Contra Costa

Beto Perez Zumba Contra Costa

Finally, in 1999, one manager said, “Teach me.” Caught off guard, Perez asked, “Only you?” Yes, she said. It was 3 p.m., and the gym was empty. Soon a passerby wandered in to watch, then two, three, four. “After 20 minutes,” says Perez, “I had about 15 people. They thought it was a new class and wanted to sign up.” Recognizing Perez’s sharp choreography, charisma, and energy, the manager invited him to teach a Saturday morning class.

But on the first day of class, Perez got stuck in traffic. “I was ten minutes late,” he says. “I didn’t know how to say ‘I’m sorry,’ but I played the music, and they loved it.”

That tends to be the reaction to Perez’s fitness program, called Zumba (pronounced “zoom-ba”). The hour-long classes alternate easy-to-follow fast dance moves with slower ones for an interval-training workout that tones muscles and burns hundreds of calories. When the music starts pumping—salsa, merengue, reggaeton—people forget they’re exercising. And that just may be the secret to Zumba’s success.

Ten years later, five million people take classes every week from 30,000 certified instructors in 75 countries, from Canada to China. More than four million DVDs have been sold, and Zumbawear has taken off (the $64.95 cargo pants are the top seller).

Perez, 39, is now creative director of the privately held Zumba Fitness. His success is all the more impressive given the obstacles he’s overcome. Raised in Cali, Colombia, by a single mother, Alberto “Beto” Perez was just 14 when his mom was injured by a stray bullet. To help support them, he worked three jobs.

All the while, he dreamed of turning his passion—dance—into something more, but he couldn’t afford lessons. (Perez says he saw the movie Grease when he was seven or eight, “and I knew I wanted to dance.”) What he lacked in formal training, though, he made up for in raw talent. At 19, he won a national lambada contest. One of Cali’s best academies called with an offer to study dance while teaching step aerobics.

One day, Perez forgot the music for his class. He had one cassette with him—Latin music he’d taped from the radio. “I improvised,” he says, “and that was the beginning of Zumba.”

Once the popular instructor got his break in Miami, would-be investors started approaching him about opening a gym. One of Perez’s students asked him to meet her son, Alberto Perlman. At 24, Perlman was doing market analysis on startups for an Internet incubator with his childhood friend Alberto Aghion (an operations guy) and watching his career options disappear with the dot-com crash. Perlman (now CEO of Zumba) hit it off with Perez immediately and recruited Aghion as COO and president.

With no money or experience, the partners needed to showcase Perez’s talents. They spent a night laying down plywood boards on Sunny Isles Beach, then invited Perez’s students to take a $20 class that they would film and show to potential investors. But after September 11, 2001, all leads dried up. Eventually, they made an infomercial, which sold about a million DVDs in six months.

When asked about revenue, Perlman is tight-lipped: “We don’t disclose figures, but it’s in the many millions.” The partners say they’ve barely tapped the possibilities for the business. “We’re releasing a Nintendo Wii game in 2010 and adding to our Zumbawear line,” says Perez. “Expect to see our first sneakers soon!”

(As seen in November Reader’s Digest).

Posted in Aerobics, Cardio dance, Dance Fitness, Exercise, Fitness, Health, Lifestyle, Weight Loss, Weight Management, Zumba | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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