This workout's
for you if...

  • gym equipment intimidates you.
  • accountability helps keep you motivated.
  • a personal trainer is not in your budget.
  • you value the fun factor over everything else.

Aerobics/Dance

The Basics

Go ahead, strike a pose. You’ll want to when you find out how good for you this super fun pastime is, especially since it’s one that fits all expertise levels. Dance class fanatics—like those who choose hip-hop, belly dancing or Zumba—will tell you what a blast they have and how energetic classes are. It’s that high energy that keeps your heart rate up to burn calories and improve your cardiovascular endurance. “Aerobic and dance classes provide wonderful health benefits,” says Jeremy Ray of the Baptist Health Fitness Center. “There’ll be improvements in the strength of the heart, arteries, veins and the entire cardiovascular system, making the body a more efficient machine. Also, you’ll see increases in muscle mass and ligament and tendon strength (which helps provide durability), as well as enhancements in the body’s ability to burn fat, recover and—last but not least—reduce stress.” Toned muscles and stronger bones are another perk, as well as a rise in good cholesterol and drop in bad cholesterol. Bonus? These physical improvements will reduce much of your joint pain and stiffness, as well as any post-exercise aches or soreness.

Common aerobic classes like Cardio Sculpt, Body Pump, step, water and boot camps offer the same physical payoffs as dance, as well as the same fast pace. They include quick sets, which are constantly changing activities to keep you interested and coming back for more. One of the best parts of these classes is undoubtedly the group setting. Not only do classes give you a chance to meet new friends with common interests, but they offer accountability, keeping you more likely to show up and challenge yourself week after week. Plus, having your instructor nearby will help ensure you use proper form so that you avoid injury and get the most from each move.

“Aerobics provides an opportunity to escape the world alongside someone else chasing the same goal: to be happy and healthy,” Ray says.

The Gear

  • Moisture-wicking clothes
  • Proper shoes

The Lingo

Plié (plee-AY): Bending your knees

Eight count: In choreography, movements in sets of eight counts, or beats in the music

Half-time: Slowing the music down to half its original speed

Tuck: Squeezing your abs and pulling your hips forward, flattening the arch in your back and elongating your tailbone

Resources

AEROBICS CLASSES

STEP, HIIT, ZUMBA, CARDIO SCULPT, BOOT CAMP, INSANITY, BODY PUMP & MORE

Conway Regional Health & Fitness Center
www.ConwayRegional.org/HealthFitnessCenter

D1 Little Rock
www.D1SportsTraining.com/LittleRock

Downtown Athletic Club
www.DACLR.com, Little Rock

Fit Factory Little Rock
www.FitFactoryLR.com, Little Rock

Health & Fitness in the Heights
www.24HealthFitness.com, two Little Rock locations

Jim Dailey Fitness & Aquatic Center
www.LittleRock.org/ParksRecreation/WarMemorial

Little Rock Athletic Club
www.LRAC.com, Little Rock

Little Rock Racquet Club
www.LRRCFC.com, Little Rock

McClure Fitness
www.McClureFitness.com, Benton & Little Rock

North Little Rock Athletic Club
www.NLRAC.com, North Little Rock

ZenStudio Fitness Boutique
www.ZenStudioFitness.com, two Little Rock locations

DANCE CLASSES

Balance Body & Sole
www.BalanceBodyandSole.com, Cabot
Ballroom Dance

Irby Studio of Dance
www.IrbyDance.com, Little Rock, Conway & Morrilton
Adult Tap

Jazzercise
www.Jazzercise.com, Little Rock
Dance Mixx, Fusion, Strike, Core, Strength, Interval

Jazzercise Conway Fitness Center
www.Jazzercise.com, Conway
Dance Mixx, Interval, Strike, Fusion, Strength & Core

Rock City Dance Center
www.RCDanceCenter.com, Little Rock
Ballet, BalletFit, Hip Hop, Tap

The Time

45-60

minutes

The Burn

350-850

calories per 45-minute class
*Average sourced from Harvard Medical School