By Laurel House for ExerciseTV
Turn on the tube almost any night of the week and feast your eyes on the perfect dancer physiques that take center stage. Before you cover up your less-than-rock hard rounds remember that the celebs on ABC's "Dancing with the Stars," struggling choreographers on FOX's "So You Think You Can Dance," and now average Janes on Oxygen's "Dance Your Ass Off" didn't start off with such trim and taut abs, asses and arms. They shimmied, kicked, and twisted their way to drool-worthy shape. And now it's your turn to do the same. So stop viewing dance as a spectator sport and instead start whittling your middle… right now. Yes, get up and shake it!
Dance is more than a performance to sit back and stare at or simply a late night club activity to get your groove on. Fact is, it's a full-body workout that increases your heart rate, encourages blood flow, and burns as much (if not more) calories and fat as traditional exercises, while simultaneously strengthening and toning your muscles. Each style of dance focuses on a different body part. So mixing it up is the best way to go.
Benefits of mixing it up:
- Ballet-Great leg and arm toner
- Latin (like samba)- All about the abs and butt
- Hip Hop or Club Dancing-Intense cardio workout
500-1000 Calorie Burn in One 50-Minute Class? Absolutely!
"For too long people have done 'serious' fitness because they think that's what they have to do to lose weight and get in shape" says Billy Blanks Jr., an ExerciseTV trainer, "and then they go out dancing at a club or wedding, dripping sweat for 2 hours, yet for some reason they don't consider it a workout." Newsflash: That kind of a workout, particularly Billy's 50-min "Dance With Me" class at 24 Hour Fitness in Los Angeles, can burn 500-1000 calories!
Instead of running the risk of sweating through your little black dress on the dance floor, shake your ass off on the gym floor, or better yet, your living room floor (Try Billy Blanks Jr.'s Dance With Me workout below).
He Danced Off 150 Pounds
Jumoke Hill, a contestant on American Idol Season 5 who is again trying out for Season 9 knows firsthand about the fat burning benefits of dance. He has already lost 151 lbs, down from 606 lbs. Like many people, Jumoke found the everyday gym workout boring. Since he loved music, he decided to try dance and discovered Billy Blanks Jr.'s Cardioke. Once he started, he didn't want to stop. "You're having so much fun exercising that before you know it you're already done. I was getting a good workout and learning some dance moves, so it was a win win for me!" Jumoke's goal is to get down to 190 lbs and he is so enthusiastic about it that he has begun documenting it on his ExerciseTV blog, Jumoke Weighs In.
Translation: You literally CAN dance your ass off!
***Get 20% off your Cardioke DVD purchase at ExerciseTV. Just click on the image, add the workout to your cart and enter the code DANCEWITHME at checkout.***