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Types of Aerobic Dance

author image Raginee Edwards
Raginee Edwards is a health educator, writing health-related articles, giving seminars and conducting consultations since 2006. She also taught group exercise classes and ran a fitness center. Edwards holds a bachelor's degree in biochemistry and a master's degree in health education from Baylor University.
Types of Aerobic Dance
Zumba class Photo Credit: Milan Stojanovic/iStock/Getty Images

You know that you need to do aerobic exercise most days of the week to stay healthy. However, maybe you have taken all the group exercise classes offered by your local gym and it's too hot or too cold to exercise outside. Dancing can be a fun answer to this problem or just a way to mix up your aerobic routine. It can even double as a date or a social outing with friends, and you will find many types of aerobics dances from which to choose.

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Zumba Fitness has quickly become one of the most popular dance aerobics programs around. It began in 2001 and, at the date of publication, has 12 million people in 125 countries attending Zumba Fitness classes, reports Zumba Fitness. This type of dance aerobics incorporates Latin moves with a party or club like atmosphere. Alberto Perez accidentally started this form of exercise when he forgot his typical aerobics music at home right before teaching a class. He put on the Latin-style music that he happened to have in his backpack and began leading his class through moves he learned while growing up in Columbia.


Judi Sheppard Missett started this type of dance aerobics in 1969. Jazzercisers all over the country move to the latest music to burn up to 600 calories in 60 minutes, claims the website Not only does this form of exercise give you an aerobic workout, but it gives you the added benefit of strengthening and toning through the use of yoga, Pilates, kickboxing and resistance training. In 2008, the Jazzercise organization counted 32,000 classes that meet weekly in over 32 countries worldwide.

Ballroom Dancing

Ballroom dancing comprises many types of dances from different parts of the world. Popular dances include modern waltz, tango, Viennese waltz, salsa and quickstep. All types of ballroom dancing are performed by a couple who is in a "closed hold" position, which means that five specific points of contact between the couples' bodies are maintained throughout the dance. This type of dancing has been documented since the early 1500s, when balls were considered important social gatherings.

Belly Dancing

According to the International Academy of Middle Eastern Dance, belly dancing came from the ancient cultures of India and the Middle East. It is performed by women and uses the muscles of the torso to move the body. Though many hold to the idea that it was primarily a form of male entertainment, it was usually done for women during fertility ceremonies, where men weren't allowed, reports IAMED.

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