LAKEVIEW — Dancing, shaking and international music — it's Zumba, the popular dance exercise class, but for the under 3-years-old set.
Unlike adult Zumba, which focuses on merengue and salsa as a form of exercise, Zumbini is more about teaching tots motor skills and an appreciation for music, said Rachel Renee Viennot, Lake View YMCA's Zumbini instructor.
Infants and their caregivers or parents play with scarves, drums and rattles, all while singing and dancing around. And like in regular Zumba, international music sets the tone for the class.
"It's not, 'Here's a 4 by 4 rhythm'," Viennot said. "It's 'Hey, let's feel this rhythm,' just to cultivate a love of music for the kids and the grown-ups."
Children age infant to three are not dancing on their own. The class on Tuesdays at 9:15 has room for ten tots and their parents or caregivers. Beyond the education, Zumbini encourages "bonding and fun" between the child and the adult, Viennot said.
"They are participating," she said of the adults. "They're singing and dancing and doing exactly what I'm doing. Or at least that's the hope."
Classes cost $120 for eight sessions.