The Expanding Popularity of Zumba

Dr. Azadeh Amy Khajavi has worked as a dentist since 1994. In her free time, Dr. Azadeh Khajavi enjoys staying physically fit through dancing, especially Zumba classes.

Though the origins of the Zumba dance-and-exercise phenomenon can be traced back to California in 1986, no moves were made to take Zumba to the mainstream public for over a decade. However, by 2002 Alberto Perez, the dance-and-aerobics instructor behind the first Zumba class, and his business partners Alberto Perlman and Alberto Aghion had begun to experience success selling Zumba DVDs via infomercials, and the demand for more Zumba was growing.

Three years later Perez, Perlman, and Aghion had introduced an educational division to Zumba, complete with an official Zumba training manual to help instructors and further spread interest for the workout. Today, as many as 4 million individuals (including 25,000 Zumba instructors) in 40 different countries engage in Zumba activities. Zumba’s popularity continues to grow, as executives have recently introduced a clothing line as well as junior programs for children as young as 5 years old.

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