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Zumba Fitness Instructor Certification

author image Laura Williams
Laura Williams has worked in recreation management since 2004. She holds a master's degree in exercise and sport science education from Texas State University, as well as a B.A. in exercise and sport science from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor.
Zumba Fitness Instructor Certification
A zumba trainer demonstrating in a gym studio. Photo Credit: kadmy/iStock/Getty Images

If you want to get paid while working out, you’ll enjoy getting a certification in Zumba. After you invest in the cost of the training to teach, you’ll land a couple classes and earn your investment right back. Keep in mind that teaching Zumba's "dance party" workout requires energy, enthusiasm and a little sexiness -- it's definitely not a workout for the faint of heart.

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New instructors have to start with Zumba Basic or Zumba Gold before expanding their horizons. Zumba Basic teaches basic steps for merengue, salsa, cumbia and reggaeton and teaches you to build routines from these steps. Zumba Basic 2 adds four additional steps to your repertoire: belly dance, flamenco, tango and samba. These steps allow you to design more advanced routines. Zumba Gold is designed to meet the needs of a deconditioned participant or an active older adult. In addition to teaching physiological differences in these populations, Zumba Gold includes instruction on a chair workout.


The Zumba Academy for instructors has branched out from the basic Zumba certification to specialty certifications. Zumba Toning incorporates weighted maraca sticks to facilitate additional strength training. Zumba Aqua takes Zumba into the pool, teaching techniques that allow you to transfer Zumba steps into an effective water routine. Zumbatomic is designed for children ages 4 to 12. This workout teaches children to get active in a way that meets their needs and psychological profile.


Certification requires a fee for educational materials and instructional seminars. Fees range from $225 to $285 as of October 2010, depending on how early you sign up for the program. If you sign up more than three weeks in advance, you qualify for the early registration fee of $225. If you sign up between one and three weeks before a course, the fee is the regular $270. If you wait until the week of the training to enroll, you'll have to pay the late $285 fee. Once you become certified, you can choose to enroll in the Zumba Instructor Network for a monthly fee. If you choose this option, you can retain your certification indefinitely.


Zumba is taught in over 60,000 facilities in 105 countries as of 2010, according to the Zumba website. And because the trend continues to grow, Zumba instructors are in high demand. Amy Loomis, Sports and Fitness Coordinator for a facility in Salem, Oregon, notes that in her area, Zumba positions continue to open up because the classes keep filling and more classes have to be added. If you're a good instructor, you can write your own ticket at most facilities.


Getting certified to teach Zumba doesn't guarantee you a teaching position. And even though positions are in high demand, many gyms require a tryout before they will hire you. Make sure you know your stuff and that you're an enthusiastic instructor. These skills help you stand out and build a following.

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