Here comes the next installment in the legend of Zumba, Zumba Fitness World Party. It will be released in October on Wii (no, it ain’t dead yet!), Wii U, and Xbox 360 Kinect. It will also be on the just-announced Xbox One console, which doesn’t have a release date yet, but should arrive in time for holiday trees.
But wait, there’s more! According to this press release, a mobile app called Zumba Dance is coming this summer. It’s a motion-based app that will track your calorie burn while you shake your booty.
Consumer Reports has just posted a comparison of console exergames Nike+ Kinect Training, Zumba Fitness Core (on Xbox Kinect), Just Dance 4 (on PS3 Move), Your Shape Fitness Evolved 2013 for WiiU, and UFC Personal Trainer (on Kinect).
Their impressions: Nike gets high marks for being advanced and offering an extensive library, Zumba is praised for being a cardio challenge as well as fun, Just Dance is mainly fun, Your Shape is good for beginners and UFC is…mainly for UFC fans.
Zumba is one of those things, like yoga or “Game of Thrones”, that’s hard to explain to the uninitiated. But one thing’s for sure, it’s a Zumba world and we just live in it.
I first became aware of this when I posted way back in 2009 about the mere possibility of a Zumba video game coming to Wii. That lil’ post on my fledgling blog began getting hits by the hundreds, and is still my most popular post ever.
Then, shortly after I got the game, my first-grader came home and said her teacher wanted to borrow it. I thought maybe they were looking into Zumba for the PE program or something – no, she wanted to try it for herself. Then I started attending weekly classes, at the behest of another school mom, and discovered the “high” of a roomful of people gyrating to Pitbull and shouting “I Love Zumba!” It’s like a cross between a dance party and pep rally, with a little exercise thrown in.
A recent article in Advertising Age talks about how Zumba went from just another infomercial to every-freaking-where (even on my drive to the beach, along roads surrounded by cow pastures and corn fields, there are roadside popsicle signs advertising Zumba classes). The chief marketing officer for Zumba explains that basically, they’re selling the joy of movement rather than the no-pain-no-gain of traditional workouts. He’s also not above self-parody:
“We want to craft an archetype of a Zumba enthusiast. If a yoga enthusiast is a tofu-eating, patchouli-smelling person, the Zumba enthusiast might have the baggy cargo pants, drive a Jeep Wrangler and rip up her clothing,” he said. “We’re in the business of building a community.”
Well, I don’t have a Jeep and the only time I rip my clothing is if I fall down, but this middle-aged mom will take baggy cargo pants over tight yoga pants with no pockets for the pedometer and mp3.
The article says Zumba wants to increase their TV presence, and already they made an appearance on Biggest Loser. Here’s the Zumba clip from TBL:
That clip says a lot about Zumba’s mass appeal. Too many group fitness classes kinda want you to be already thin and fit before joining. With Zumba, it doesn’t matter who you are or what you look like; just get out there and free your mind and body. If your baggy pants get even baggier, that’s just a bonus.
A third Zumba game is coming this fall! Zumba Fitness Core has been announced for Wii and Xbox 360 Kinect (but not PS3 or Wii U). It looks like much the same shimmying with new music and moves. Song list is yet to be announced. The Wii booty belt will return, and Kinect’s version will add a community feature and voice controls so you can shout out your love for Zumba.
1,2,3, ZumBAH! The next installation of the legend of Zumba is now available: Zumba Fitness Rush for Xbox 360 Kinect. If you pick it up at Target, a bonus “Fitness-Concert” DVD is included.
Last year’s debut of Zumba on Kinect got not-so-caliente reviews, mainly because of problems with Kinect picking up all the shimmying or shutting down entirely, but the Zumba sequel on Wii has been getting raves, so there’s a good chance for improvement here too.
And if not, just party it up with the DVD, the first Zumba DVD to hit retail in a very long time.