IMG_6443Maria Rico

The first thing you should know about me is that dancing is my passion and musica latina is in my blood. I was born and raised in a small town in Colombia. All my life I have been surrounded by physical fitness activities, starting when I was 7 years old when I first started dancing to traditional Colombian rhythms. At the Universidad del Tolima, I studied Sports and Physical Education while working part time leading cardio-rumba (cardio party) exercise classes. I also have some background training in Colombian folkloric dance.

In 2007, I decided to embark on one of my biggest challenges ever: leaving my country and moving to the United States, where I would be faced with learning a new language and culture. When I took a Zumba class in the US for the first time, I felt I was back home at a Colombian party having fun, plus I was getting the benefits of exercising. At that moment I decided that I wanted to share this feeling with other people.

I have been a certified Zumba instructor since 2013, with Dance certifications accomplished both here in Seattle as well as in Bogota, Colombia. I have experienced firsthand the positive impact fitness activities can have on people’s lives, mentally and physically! As a Dance  instructor, I want to share my passion for dancing and motivate people to reach their full potential, while respecting that every person is unique and has different goals and levels of expertise. I think being fit is not just the way your body looks. True fitness is the healthy balance between your mind and body, a connection that defines you as a person. That said, no matter the intensity of your workout, always give 100%.