Zumba Fights Depression


Today’s Daily Prompt asks us to talk about whatever we want. Perfect timing because today I’ve got Zumba on my mind; Zumba and depression.

I battle with depression. I don’t take antidepressants because it’s not the kind of depression caused by hormone or chemical imbalance. It’s the kind caused by being sixty-one and struggling to make barely enough money to pay my bills. I’ll save my complaints for other posts; I just want to make clear that this is the ‘drudgery and mediocrity of life’ kind of depression.

About 7 years ago my marriage broke apart.  We worked at our own business so I lost my job, home and mate all in one horrible day.  I was severely depressed for a long time. I ended up being the worst guest my sister ever had.

One day she pointed out Zumba was at the YMCA and the first one was free. It was advertised as ‘a workout disguised as dancing’.  I like dancing and my ex would “never dance” so I went.  An hour of dancing to pop music and I remember thinking, “I feel good!” I realized I hadn’t felt good in a very long time.

I’ve been going for about 4 years now although I tend to drop out in the summer.  The last two summers I have worked as much as I can. I live in a cottage/tourist area and get more ‘hours’ in the summer. On days off I try and keep up with my housework, inside and out. I have to admit; I get too exhausted to go to Zumba.  When I’m on my feet all day, the last thing I want to do is jump on them.

But depression creeps in. Working just to keep going to work is so depressing.  After working very hard the last few weeks, I was stiff and achy and would start to cry at almost nothing. All that freaking work just to pay my house insurance and try hard to think of it as; “yay, I paid my house insurance.”

Then I remembered Zumba. I had the day off; get back to Zumba, even if I just move from foot to foot in time the music.

I felt better right away. I drove home smiling! The shower was ecstasy!  Next day I worked with my boss and he didn’t bother me (hardly) at all. I found I could brush off his rudeness much easier. I could stop thinking about my co-workers and get some good sleep.

You have to fight depression. Sometimes it’s like pushing water uphill but you must make that effort or fall into a black hole of despair and self-pity.

Remember, I am not talking about clinically diagnosed depression. This is the depression that comes when you realize life doesn’t always turn out like you had planned so you better learn how to make the best of it.

This is how I feel when I do Zumba;


This is how I look;

aged zumba

But remember this;

how to see

I downloaded our newest Zumba number…..now I can stomp on depression at home!




8 thoughts on “Zumba Fights Depression

  1. I just stick Ricky Martin on the stereo and dance like a lunatic. Costs me nothing and brings a giggle most times (I have to be in the jaws of the black dog for it not to work) Glad you found something that works for you 🙂

  2. I think I have had every variety of depression in life. I never took drugs for it, (well, I did once, and things got worse) preferring to deal with the devil I knew. But across the board, exercise, especially dance related exercise has been a life-saver many a time in my life. And I know, when I am feeling down, after a period of non-activity – that moving about – even taking a vigorous walk can change things around. And even when one’s life circumstances are discouraging, when one’s body is feeling good – it is easier to take.

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