The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

Alternative Ways to Exercise: Salsa Dancing

Got rhythm? Then salsa dancing might be an excellent activity to take up as it proves to be both a great source of exercise and enjoyment. Although not a particularly mainstream dance style, salsa is a great choice for those who want to substitute a traditional workout for something new, upbeat and spicy.

A coalescence of several different Caribbean dance styles and African music influences, salsa has transformed into a seemingly modern, flirtatious and more widely pursued type of dance.

At first, salsa may look intimidating with its many quick foot and hip movements. However, it doesn’t have to be this complicated as beginners are not expected to be able to perform in such an advanced manner.

“The steps can be quite simple,” said senior Andrea Infeld, who has taken salsa lessons. “If you’re good with your feet, salsa is nothing but fun to learn.”

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The Hillview Community Center in Los Altos and the Cubberly Community Center in Palo Alto have offer salsa lessons for beginners as well classes for many other types of dance. Starlight Dance Club in Sunnyvale also has salsa group classes and private lessons for those who like a more personalized approach.

Not only does Starlight offer salsa introductory courses, but it additionally provides a salsa aerobics class for those who are looking for a more vigorous workout.

Overtime Fitness in Mountain View also has salsa classes taught by the school’s dance team coach Jaqueline Bequette.

“It’s is really fun and makes you feel really good about yourself,” senior Hana Skarbovig said.

Because salsa dancing is done in pairs, it is potentially a great way to get to know someone better.

“If you have a crush on a guy, take him salsa dancing,” Hana said.

Another attractive feature about salsa is the unique attire. The elaborate, flamboyant and attention-grabbing costumes of salsa provide even more variation to typical exercise.

As a whole, this fluid, alluring Cuban dance is a unique and interesting activity to try, especially for those who want more than the gym or sports team experience. As long as beginners take an open-minded approach and let go of their self-consciousness, salsa will surely be a hit. And as Hana puts it, “Who wouldn’t want to shake their hips as crazy as they can?”

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