How to Become a Zumba Instructor
If you have a passion for Latin American dance and would like to teach people how to live healthier lives by incorporating it into their workout routine, you may consider becoming a Zumba Instructor. To find out more about the responsibilities of this position and how much you can potentially make, read this article.
What Does a Zumba Instructor Do?
A Zumba Instructor teaches aerobic exercise inspired by Latin American dance. This individual combines hip-hop with salsa, merengue, reggaeton and samba to create fitness programs for people of all ages. Zumba Instructors usually work in dance studios and in gyms.
Zumba Instructors must be able to lead group fitness classes as well as individual classes. They must provide guidance to students to help them master this fitness program, while making sure that participants are staying safe and not posing a threat to their health.
Typical responsibilities of a Zumba Instructor include:
- Educational tasks, such as teaching dance routines to students
- Dancing skills, such as mastering Latin American dance moves
- Customer service skills, such as marketing and signing up new students to the class
- Organizational skills, such as keeping rosters of students and payments
Zumba Instructor Skills
A Zumba Instructor must be able to learn dance routines and teach them to students of all levels and ages. To excel in this role, this individual must be a good dancer, fit, energetic and outgoing. They must be able to motivate others to not just sign up for the classes, but to push themselves to workout to lose weight and improve their health. This career choice requires professionals to be active listeners, good communicators and to be able to form relationships with clients.
Other key Zumba Instructor skills include:
- Time management
- Social perceptiveness
How Do You Become a Zumba Instructor?
Education and Training
Zumba is a trademarked fitness program, and applicants over the age of 18 can become certified to teach it. Once you locate a Zumba training center near you, you can earn a Zumba Instructor certificate to teach one or both classes, Zumba and Zumba Gold. The Zumba certification allows you to teach basic Zumba by learning four dance elements, merengue, salsa, cumbia and reggaeton. The Zumba Gold certification allows you to teach older students with a lower-impact fitness program. Licenses are granted for one year, and must be renewed thereafter.
After receiving the Zumba certification, candidates work as independent contractors, and can teach in a location of their choosing, determining their own schedules and rates. Some fitness centers or countries may require Zumba Instructors to obtain group exercise instructor certification.
Although there are no prerequisites to getting your Zumba Instructor license, it is beneficial to take Zumba classes to become familiar with this type of exercise routine, or have experience teaching group exercise.
Finding a job
The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts an 8 percent growth for Fitness Trainers and Aerobic Instructors through 2024, with 7,490 jobs becoming available each year.
Although many Zumba Instructors are self-employed, others will require a professional resume to list their experience and licenses when applying for jobs.
Zumba Instructor job openings are listed in JobHero’s job library. Checking with local gyms and dance studios can be helpful in finding work.
A cover letter expressing your love for Latin music and experience in teaching group fitness classes can help set you apart from other candidates.
How Much Do Zumba Instructors Get Paid?
As Zumba Instructors are free to set their own rates, their incomes vary. However, the hourly average rate for Fitness Trainers and Aerobic Instructors, according to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, is $17.39. The lowest paid instructors make $8.98, while the highest paid earn $33.74.
Top 10 States for a Zumba Instructor’s Salary
Fitness Trainers and Aerobic Instructors in the following states make the highest average hourly rates.
- Guam – $26.55
- New York – $26.39
- New Jersey – $23.69
- California – $22.33
- Connecticut – $20.80
- Texas – $20.02
- Washington – $19.76
- Vermont – $19.53
- Colorado – $19.35
- Massachusetts – $19.33
Zumba Instructor Resources
These resources can help you find out more information about becoming a Zumba Instructor.
On the Web
Zumba Fitness – The official Zumba website with information about becoming a Zumba Instructor.
YouTube – Examples of Zumba fitness videos for routine creation.
Zumba Community – A place to post information about Zumba® and Zumba® events, and make professional connections with other Zumba® participants.
Zumba Student Network – A group open to all Zumba students and enthusiasts.
Z Life – Official Zumba blog with music recommendations, weight loss advice and tips for instructors.
ZumbaForHealth.com – A blog by ACE Group Fitness Certified and Silver Sneakers Certified Instructor specializing in Zumba and Zumba Gold.