HIIT vs. Zumba

As a professional there is a craze going on with people that, I personally, just don’t get, Zumba. What is so appealing about it? I guess you can work up a sweat dancing around for an hour, but why do you need an instructor, and dish out money for it? I’m sure you can find songs you love on the internet, turn it up to 11, and just let yourself dance free! I know I have done this in the morning getting ready or just to kill time. But when I do workout I prefer something with a little more substance, a little more bang for my buck, something that is the WHOLE fitness package! HIIT classes, high intensity interval training!

Awesome people doing awesome things

Awesome people doing awesome things

I can see some appeal of Zumba there are some health benefits. You can help increase your cardiovascular capacity, a little bit, if you can keep up and know what you are doing. You can increase your bone density, but only in your legs, and depending on how hard you stomp to the beat. There is some camaraderie, and a way to find some people with like interests, but there is no push to outdo yourself, or a friend. Unless there is dance off’s in the class that I don’t know about… That would be so awesome! As far as I know this is not the case, if it is true please post a link in the comment section below, or tweet me (@mooreblitz), I would love to see it.

HIIT class offers everything above, and more. If the music selection is a big deal I am sure if you ask nicely, or made a playlist the instructor won’t have a problem playing it for you during the workout. HIIT does offer increase cardiovascular capacity, Just because you are using weights doesn’t mean this isn’t an cardio exercise. You may be pushed to go harder than you would by yourself because the class needs, and wants you to finish faster. Sometimes in a HIIT class you are the timer! The speed at which you perform the action determines the rest of the class’ fate! And most of the time you just trying to outdo yourself from last class, can do you more reps, can you use a heavier weight, these are all things that you can see real progression with. Full body bone density action, there won’t be a bone in your body that does not become stronger, since every muscle will be activated in a class, and there will be excess stress placed on the bone because of the weight which will cause the bone to become stronger. It’s not just your bones that will get stronger your whole body will, you will build muscle meaning you will be able to lift more, lift faster, and lift safer. The whole ‘if I lift heavy weight’s I’ll get huge,’ I’m looking at you ladies, well it’s a myth so there is no excuse. And there is so much camaraderie, everyone with a single thought usually one of two things, “please god let this be the last set,” or “I hate (insert trainers names) so much right now!” Then there is the push from yourself as you see improvements, and from a friend in the class who thinks they can outdo you.

It's like a montage but it's only one picture

It’s like a montage but it’s only one picture


If you want to experience something different every class, find out how good it feels to truly push yourself, to find your limits, and have a sense of a job well done come try a HIIT class! If you want to dance for an hour go to a rave, a club, your living room, or Zumba. Are Zumba dance moves transferable to real life situations like a dance battle? If the is one thing I learned from HIIT it’s that a squat paired with any other movement can be a dance move, and any core exercise. I suggest trying both to really see what each has to offer, and make your choice on which fitness class you prefer.

Steven Moore About Steven Moore

Passionate Personal Fitness Trainer, and NASM Corrective Exercise Specialist at Blitz Conditioning. Prone to spurts of random nonsense. [Read my full bio]


  1. I enjoy HIIT sessions and rock at them but Zumba if you have decent coordination and can follow along and kill the moves can be very good and more fun. But again I feel u have to have decent rhythm and coordination to get the most out of it. It is my cardiovascular option of choice… way out does running which I consider boring and a chore. Zumba instead makes me drop killer sweat and the hour goes by like 10 min… making u wish it was longer. Don’t knock Zumba just because it’s hard for some people to have enough rhythm to make an excellent workout out of it. Stick with it a little, try a few different instructors. With the right instructor and playlist, one that moves at high energy with killer moves, you will be dropping the calories and looking forward to your next class. Soon you will be following new moves easily enough to adjust the intensity to your own level. Just saying…

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