Jessica Meeks YYC 

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Since Apr 2010

What are the BEST shoes to wear for a Zumba® Fitness Class?

It always comes down to the shoes, doesn't it, ladies???

I get asked this question A LOT!  And you know what? The truth is, I can't tell you what the best shoes are FOR YOU!  That is a question ONLY YOU can figure out the answer to!!! 
It took me years of trial & error to come up with my list of requirements that I look for in a shoe to keep my body happy during a full Zumba® class and beyond! (because a lot of Zumba® injuries don't happen during the class, they are the result of long term overuse/ consistent impact/bad shoes!) 

... So, let me share with you what I've discovered over the last 5 years from teaching numerous 
Zumba® classes about picking the right shoes for any dancing surface!

*** The surface of the floor that you are dancing on makes a HUGE impact on how much friction you are going to create while dancing... and each different type of flooring requires a different type of shoe to counteract this issue!

a) hardwood gym floor 

- this is ultimately the best surface to continually practice Zumba on.  It gives the most support to your movements as well as provides the proper cushion from impact to your joints.  Win-Win!

Pick a shoe that has a low profile sole.  My favorite brand is Asics because they come in such fun colors and fit great!  I also have a few Adidas shoes that I enjoy wearing for Zumba in the gym too (Climacool™, and Iyra
Something with more rubber on the sole works great on hardwood, so implement your fitness shoes for your gym Fitness classes!  

... here are some examples of shoes I wear!

My favorite ASICS for gym floors

Acics® GT1000 series (best price!)

Asics® Kinsei (best cushioning... but more $$$)

Asics® Tri-Noosa.... super light, but more $.

Adidas for hardwood floors

Adias® Iriya (discontinued)

Adidas® ClimaCool™

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b) carpeted surfaces

When dancing on carpet, I recommend a shoe with a foam based sole... having less rubber will create less friction and give you a much more enjoyable, smooth experience!

*SIDE NOTE: Every year, there is a Zumba Convention, where we dance mainly on carpetted ballrooms of the Hyatt in Orlando.  The first year I went I swore was the end of my Zumba career because my knees ached from wearing the wrong shoes while trying to do my usual dance moves on that berber carpet!  Once I discovered the Saucony Viratta, my career was saved!  (I can also wear the Adidas Climacool on carpet, in a pinch!  Something to do with it having less rubber making direct contact with the floor is the key!)

Since that experience, I have also purchased a pair of Zumba® high tops, which are NO GOOD to me on a hardwood floor (not enough traction) but work GREAT on carpet, as I find the sole to have the perfect amount of 'slip and grip'!

Saucony® Virrata super light weight and LOW friction foam sole.

Saucony® Viratta (another color combo)

Zumba® Hightops with smooth sole

c) foam flooring/ padded floor

similar to carpet... use similar shoes, but choose carefully.  

d) hard surface (like a stage or concrete)

I like to wear high tops since they offer more traction to the ground and they need to be smooth soled.  Most gym shoes will work too.   However, try different types to find the right ones FOR YOU!

Zumba® Programs I am Licensed To Teach

  • Zumba® Basic 1Zumba® Basic 1
    Licensed to teach regular Zumba® classes.
  • Zumba® StepZumba® Step
    Licensed to teach Zumba® Step.
  • Zumba® ToningZumba® Toning
    Licensed to teach Zumba® Toning.
  • Aqua Zumba®Aqua Zumba®
    Licensed to teach Aqua Zumba®.
  • Zumba Sentao®Zumba Sentao®
    Licensed to teach Zumba Sentao®.
  • Zumba® KidsZumba® Kids
    Licensed to teach Zumba® Kids.
  • Zumba® KidsZumba® Kids
    Licensed to teach Zumba® Kids.