July 04, 2017

Breaking News

Myanmar language teacher gets a jump on new exercise craze

Moe Chit, Centre, the Managing Director of the Moe Myanmar Language Centre, engages in her second job as a Zumba teacher at the Fitway Gym on Upper Pansodan Road. Photo: Courtesy Moe Chit
Moe Chit, Centre, the Managing Director of the Moe Myanmar Language Centre, engages in her second job as a Zumba teacher at the Fitway Gym on Upper Pansodan Road. Photo: Courtesy Moe Chit

When Moe Chit isn’t teaching Myanmar language students, she’s likely teaching them about Zumba.
Moe Chit, the owner of the Moe Myanmar Language Centre on Thein Phyu Road in Yangon, discovered Zumba, a dance fitness programme, while on a visit to Australia in 2014. It was love at first jump.
“I was in Melbourne for a month and joined a gym. I saw Zumba classes on the schedule and decided to go,” said Moe Chit. “I liked it right away.”
Upon her return to Yangon, she continued her new exercise regimen via YouTube videos, but eventually decided to become a Zumba teacher. She completed her three-day training by Zumba Fitness in Bangkok, Thailand last year, making her one of only five licensed instructors in Myanmar.
Since then, she has held Myanmar language classes three or four days a week, and taught Zumba two days a week. Her first Zumba class in April drew over 30 people, drawing a mix of locals, foreigners, men and women.
The reaction has been overwhelmingly positive.
“Moe has such a fun and outgoing personality, and since Zumba is her hobby, this comes through in her classes, which means you can’t not have fun,” said Vince Kilpatrick, an expatriate from New Zealand who has also taken language classes from Moe Chit.
Zumba was created in the 1990s by the Colombian dancer and choreographer Alberto Perez when he forgot his music for an aerobics class he was teaching. Undaunted, he went to his car, found a tape of salsa and merengue music, and improvised a routine. The resulting class was an immediate hit. Approximately 15 million people now take regular Zumba classes in over 200,000 locations across 80 countries.
Moe Chit will continue her Zumba training next month, she said, when she will attend a course in Queensland, Australia to learn how to teach Strong by Zumba, a high-intensity interval training class.She said she will be the first in Myanmar to be certified to teach the new classes.
The exercise classes that involve slow warmup movements as well as energetic dance moves are still new in Myanmar, a conservative country, but Moe and her students believe it will become popular.
“I think it’s a little unusual for the culture (of Myanmar),” said Vince Kilpatrick, “but if she keeps it fun and exciting like it is now, more and more people will get into it then.” Moe Chit’s classes last one hour and are held at the Fitway Gym on Upper Pansodan Road in Yangon. She said she became enamored of Zumba because it combines two of her obsessions – exercise and dancing.
“I still go salsa dancing at least once a week, and the Zumba classes have the same feel,” said Moe Chit, a small, slender woman with an easy smile. “I love Zumba because it feels like you’re at a party dancing with friends.”

Comments

Related posts

Translate »