Want to Dance? Here’s Your Step-by-Step Fitness Guide

With so many popular dance-based TV shows, it’s only natural that people everywhere would get in on the action and sign up for salsa lessons, hip-hop classes or hit the ballet barre. Not only is dancing trendy at the moment, it’s also a blast and burns a ton of calories. Where can an adult beginner turn for guidance? Here are a few helpful local resources:


Referred to as “The Latin-inspired, easy-to-follow, calorie-burning, dance-fitness party,” this gym-centric style of dance is growing in popularity every day. People can choose between the traditional Zumba fitness classes or toning classes that use lightweight, maraca-inspired sticks to sculpt their arms, abs and legs. There is also a Zumba class that offers modified moves for older adults. Most classes are an hour long, and each song has its own choreographed dance.


This sexy dance originated in Cuba, blasts up to 400 calories an hour and requires some rhythm. The biggest thing to remember is that most of the movement comes from your hips, so you need to be nice and loose. Practicing good posture will help you move more gracefully across the dance floor, too. Group lessons are offered throughout the Northwest. Learn more on the USA Dance website. Wear something that flows nicely and not-too-high heels.


Turning, pushing, pulling, passing… that’s how you swing. Watch someone perform this jazz-inspired dance properly and you’ll be filled with envy. Nothing looks more fun on the dance floor. Plus, you’re strengthening your arms, abs, hips, butt and legs for as long as you decide to dance.

  • Wear something reminiscent of The Swing Era. It’ll get you in the spirit of the time and make the experience more fun.
  • Find a club anywhere on the Swing Dance Council website.

Belly Dancing

If toning your abs is your main goal, then consider belly dancing. This Middle Eastern style of dance involves articulated, flowing movements, starting with your head and going all the way down to your feet, to create a fluid, beautiful dance.


Additional resources

If you’re hoping to take up the waltz, foxtrot, or other ballroom dances, check out your local Arthur Murray Dance Studio.

For introductory ballet and/or hip-hop classes, try one of these locations: