The very word—Zumba!—makes me want to pop my pelvis, unhinge my hips and expose my midriff. There’s just no getting around it: besides being a dynamic and all-encompassing workout, this exercise craze that has traveled ‘round the globe, not only shapes, tones, melts and sculpts—but also has the power to make a woman feel downright sexy. For the uninitiated, think of Zumba Fitness as an all-out fitness party with a contagious blend of Latin and international rhythms that can burn up to 1,000 calories in a one-hour class; a cardio-toning sensation has melted the pounds and inches off 12 million enthusiasts in 125 countries in more than 110,000 locations worldwide (

In the spirit of our 2012 Get Fit, Feel Fab! campaign (scroll down for details on our upcoming Twitter Party and click here to RSVP, we checked in with Zumba Celebrity Instructor Kass Martin:

1. What inspires you most about being a Zumba instructor?

The people. Getting to know all the wonderful people who love Zumba Fitness and the community it provides. It’s a place where everyone is accepted and can simply be themselves.

2. Why do you think people love it so much?

Because it doesn’t feel like a workout—it feels like a party. You literally feel happier after you have finished your workout. How many things can you say that about?

3. What do you think makes Zumba Fitness a superior workout in comparison to traditional aerobics classes, or say, running or spinning?

The music. You never get sick of the music and that’s what moves you. The sounds and rhythms make you forget how hard you are  actually working; the harder you work the better the results—and that’s what Zumba Fitness provides: fun, community and results.

4. What are some key benefits of Zumba Fitness? (beyond the obvious ones that come from all exercise…) — are there any unique benefits?  

Zumba Fitness has been known to bring you into an ‘endorphin-released zone.’ What this means is that it’s proven to make you more joyful while participating in a workout. You don’t get this kind of happiness on a spin bike or treadmill. When you attend a class that makes you happier, you are more able to make friends; you have a new sense of purpose; you’re able to escape your worries, and have fun. Really style=”font-style:italic”.

5. What led you to Zumba? 

Even though I am not Latina, I have always loved Spanish music. I came to Zumba Fitness by attending a class after it was recommended to me, and after I realized what a party it was, I instantly wanted to become an instructor. Once I went to the training, a fire was lit and I knew I had found my passion.

6. Do you have any funny stories about something that happened in one of your Zumba classes? Can you share a cool anecdote?

I love to goof off, and one time I was doing a little dance to make someone laugh and I literally ended up on the floor. Fell flat on my butt.

7. Have you seen people actually become better dancers by doing Zumba classes? Can you talk about that a bit?

Absolutely. I have not only seen this in students, but I, myself, have become a better dancer. I danced in high school and a little in college and although I enjoyed it, I now realize that I was dancing according to someone else’s interpretation of the music and moves. With Zumba Fitness, there is so much freedom and creativity, which allows you to push yourself and gain a better awareness of how your body moves, which in turn allows you to improve and feel more free with your dancing.

To hear more from Kass, make sure to Join the Twitter Shape-Up Party, featuring Zumba® Fitness!