My Journey as a Plus Size Zumba Instructor

In today's blog post, I want to take you on a journey through my experiences and share how I became a Zumba instructor despite not fitting the stereotypical image.

Natasha Ngindi

7/6/20232 min read

Today, I want to share my journey of becoming a Zumba instructor and my experiences in the fitness world as a plus-size individual. It's a story of self-discovery, breaking stereotypes, and embracing the joy of movement.

Discovering My Passion for Dance Fitness:

I've always loved music and had a passion for dancing, even though it was more like spontaneous dance parties in my room. Dance fitness classes, like Zumba, were something I enjoyed, but I never considered them real workouts because they were fun and felt effortless. I had a misguided belief that workouts had to be painful to be effective, which led me down a destructive path of excessive exercise.

The Dark Side of Overtraining:

At one point, I was working out six times a week, twice a day, and it was unbearable. I thought I was doing what was best for my health, but I was miserable. This unsustainable routine eventually forced me to give up on exercise altogether. During this time, I stopped dieting but gained weight rapidly, leading to a profound self-loathing.

A Dietitian's Unexpected Advice:

Seeking help, I consulted a dietitian, expecting advice on losing weight. Instead, she introduced me to intuitive eating, emphasizing the importance of enjoying movement. It was a paradigm shift – the idea that fitness should be something you look forward to, not dread.

Rekindling My Love for Zumba:

With this new perspective, I returned to Zumba classes, and it was a game-changer. I had a blast and couldn't get enough. My instructor, a confident Black woman who didn't fit the stereotypical fitness body, was a revelation. She proved that fitness wasn't limited to a specific body size, challenging my preconceptions.

Inspired to Make a Change:

When she left, I decided to embark on my journey to become a Zumba instructor. It was a scary prospect, as someone who didn't fit the typical mold. But I realized that my passion and unique perspective could inspire others who felt excluded from fitness spaces.

Becoming a Certified Zumba Instructor:

I pursued Zumba training, a day filled with joy and support from the inclusive Zumba community. I knew I had to share this incredible experience with others. Becoming a certified Zumba instructor made me one of the few plus-size instructors in my city.

Facing Skepticism and Overcoming Doubts:

Teaching Zumba came with challenges. Some were surprised to see me as the instructor, given my appearance. Doubters were irrelevant; I was determined to create an inclusive space where everyone felt welcome, free from body judgment.

My Mission as a Zumba Instructor:

My mission is simple – to let people of all sizes experience the joy of dance. I'm still teaching, still dancing, and still inspiring people to move their bodies, no matter their size. It's about following your passion and defying stereotypes.

So, if you're interested in dance fitness or aspire to be a fitness instructor outside the typical mold, know that you can do it, and you belong here. My story is a testament to pursuing your dreams and doing what you love, regardless of appearance. Thank you for joining me on this journey, and remember, you deserve to embrace your passion.