Goodbye, Ryka – Tried ‘em, Hated ‘em

November 16th, 2014

My last post was to announce that I finally bought Ryka athletic shoes for Zumba. This post is to announce I tried them, I hated them, and I’m moving on.

I hesitated buying a pair of Ryka’s for a long time, but in September 2014, I finally decided to try the black, blue, and pink Ryka Flextra. Ryka’s tout themselves as a studio shoe – a shoe that is best for studio group fitness classes. I hesitated because Ryka’s are not cheap. I also think they are unattractive. Ryka as a company change styles frequently, my Zumba participants have complained to me in the past that by the time they needed a replacement pair of Ryka’s, the company no longer offered the shoe. I was finally so frustrated shopping for a good new pair of Zumba shoes that I decided to give Ryka a try despite all that…

ryka flextra 1Fail. Epic fail. My biggest complaint about Ryka Flextra is that they are wide, definitely too wide for me. They felt sloppy during lateral movements and my foot was sliding all over the place inside the shoe. They look as wide as they feel. My second complaint is that the bottom of the shoe has slightly rounded edges, not enough to notice with the naked eye, but you’ll feel the rocking with lateral movements during salsa and reggaeton. I have weak ankles and am prone to lateral ankle rolls, and I had slight ankle rolls several times in Ryka Flextra. Thank goodness they’re low profile or I would’ve sprained my ankle.

There is nothing special about this shoe. Only buy it if it’s on clearance and you’re desperate. And, if that’s the case, you might be in luck. Last week I saw Ryka Flextra on the clearance rack at DSW.

I Finally Bought Ryka Athletic Shoes for Zumba

August 23rd, 2014

I did it. I finally bought a pair of Ryka studio athletic shoes for Zumba.

Although I’ve know for awhile that Ryka is a leader in studio or group fitness classes, but I hesitated to buy a pair of Ryka’s for awhile. Ryka athletic shoes are not the most attractive sneakers and it’s important for me to feel at least somewhat attractive while I do Zumba. Another reason I hesitated is that Ryka frequently changes offerings, and a couple of times, they stopped manufacturing a line of shoes before I had a chance to buy a pair.

But tonight, I had a weak moment while shopping at DSW and I tried on a pair of black, blue, and pink Ryka Flextra. They fit true to size – I wear 6.5, I tried 6.5, and they fit like 6.5. They advertize they have a “re-zorb” system to absorb shock in high-impact group fitness classes. (My aching Achilles tendonitis will be happy about that.) The soles are built for movement in all directions including lateral movements, unlike the forward only movement that running shoes are designed for. The soles also have the circle at the ball of the foot for pivoting and turning. They were $59.99 at DSW.

I’ll try them out while teaching Zumba tomorrow. I’ll write a post to review my new Ryka Flextra for Zumba soon! In the meantime, you can read more about Ryka athletic shoes for Zumba here:

Kelly Ripa Collection Ryka Transition Shoes for Zumba

Best Ryka Zumba Shoes

ryka flextra 1ryka flextra 2

They’re Back – Zumba Shoes are Back in Stock

April 16th, 2014

It’s common knowledge Zumba shoes from Zumba Fitness sell out on a regular basis. I received notice by email today that Zumba shoes are back in stock in the Zumba shop. Good luck!Zumba Shoes Are Back 4_16_2014

Master Class with Maria Elena Zapata-Sobojinski at Zstudio Duluth on Saturday, January 4, 2014

January 3rd, 2014

Don’t miss this 90-minute Zumba Master Class with Michigan Zumba instructor and Columbia-native, Maria Elena Zapata-Sobojinski at Zstudio Duluth on Saturday, January 4, 2014 at 4pm. The cost is $10 at the Zstudio door and all proceeds will go to the Gillette Children’s Hospital.

Maria Elena Zumba Master Class 1-4-2014

Zstudio Duluth Grand Re-opening and 2nd Anniversary Party – Friday, January 3, 2014

January 3rd, 2014

Two free hours of Zumba, along with food and drinks tonight, January 3, 2014 at Zstudio in Duluth, MN to celebrate the grand re-opening of the studio after renovations as well as the studio’s 2nd anniversary.

Free Zumba starts tonight at the newly renovated studio at 5:30pm. After 1 hour of free Zumba, eat, drink, and mingle with Zstudio owners, staff, and patrons from 6:30 to 7:30pm. More free Zumba follows from 7:30 to 8:30pm.

  • 5:30-6:30pm 1 hour of free Zumba with the Zstudio Zumba instructors
  • 6:30-7:30pm eat, drink, and mingle while you check out the Zstudio renovations and meet the studio owners, staff, and patrons
  • 7:30-8:30pm 1 hour of free Zumba with the Zstudio Zumba instructors

All are welcome and this event is free for all! If you’ve never been to Zstudio, stop by and try Zumba or simply support a growing local business and check out the newly renovated studio. We’d love to meet you!

Zstudio Duluth
116 West 1st Street
Duluth, MN 55802
(across from Aces on 1st)

Mingle and Jingle Christmas Party at Zstudio in Duluth, Minnesota

December 16th, 2013

The owners, instructors, and staff of Zstudio in the Zenith City of Duluth, Minnesota would like to invite you to our annual Mingle and Jingle Christmas party this Friday, December 20, 2013 from 5:30 to 7:30pm.

This holiday event is open and free to everyone!

From 5:30 to 6:30pm, join us to eat, drink, and be merry. Mix, mingle, and get a sneak preview of the renovations happening over the holiday break.

From 6:30 to 7:30pm join us for one-hour class made up of the fitness classes offered at Zstudio.

Zstudio is located at 116 W 1st Street, Duluth, Minnesota 55802. For more information, visit the Mingle and Jingle Facebook event page.

zstudio

Good Portable CD/MP3 Player for Zumba

November 17th, 2012

I teach Zumba at a variety of locations. My favorite will always be a studio with mirrors and hardwood floors, preferably one dedicated to dance or Zumba only.

Community education programs commonly offer Zumba in a variety of locations, especially schools. I have taught Zumba classes in gymnasiums, empty classrooms, and even cafeterias.

While studios usually have a good sound system equipped for CDs or MP3 players; gyms, classrooms, and cafeterias do not. Last fall, I had to find a reliable, portable stereo that would travel and work well in a variety of spaces.

I bought this red and black boombox from Amazon for approximately $50 new. So far, it has good sound and has worked well for teaching a Zumba class of 25 in a middle school gym and an elementary school cafeteria. It’s slightly larger than a breadbox and attractive. Between classes, I carry it in a box in the trunk of my car. The model is QuantumFX and the model number is J-30U.  It appears to be sold under several brand names,. If you are looking for a portable CD/MP3 player for Zumba or other group fitness classes, I recommend it. I have been happy with the performance of this portable stereo.

zumba portable stereo

Best Zumba Studios in Minnesota 2012

June 12th, 2012

Looking for a good place to do Zumba in Minnesota? CBS affiliate WCCO in the Twin Cities named

  • Zumba Minnesota (Minneapolis)
  • North Saint Paul Community Center (North Saint Paul)
  • Z Studio Duluth (Duluth)
  • Zeven Dance Studio
  • Zumba (Minneapolis), and Lions Gym (Robbinsdale)

as some top places to try Zumba in Minnesota. For the best Zumba in Minnesota, I would also recommend:

Do you have a favorite Zumba studio in Minnesota or your area? Let us know!

DC Skate Shoes for Zumba

January 21st, 2012

I started doing Zumba at a new studio, and I saw something I have never seen before: Skateboarding shoes in Zumba class.

What are skateboarding shoes, like DC Skate shoes designed for? Grip. Keeping the skater’s feet on his or her skateboard without slipping, sliding, or rocking off the board.

Is grip what you need for Zumba? Absolutely not!

Of course you don’t want to go sliding across the studio floor, but Zumba requires turns and twists. Your feet must be able to pivot or your ankle, knee, and hip joints will suffer. Skate shoes also do not allow the lateral movement required in the most basic of salsa moves in a Zumba class.

While skate shoes might look cool, they are not the right footware for Zumba.

DC Skate Shoes for Zumba

Kelly Ripa Collection Ryka Transition Shoes for Zumba

January 7th, 2012

Who doesn’t love Kelly Ripa?

You probably also know that Kelly Ripa does Zumba. Earlier this week, Zumba Fitness creator, Beto Perez did Zumba with Kelly Ripa, Rob Lowe, and Vanessa Lachey on  LIVE! with Kelly. Watch it here: http://bcove.me/d2g03fc0

kelly ripa zumba

The RipaRyka Kelly Ripa Collection by Ryka features a shoe called the Transition that is perfect for Zumba. I have heard a lot of good things about the Ryka Transition for Zumba, Zumba Gold, and Curves Zumba in the Circuit classes from my fellow Zumba instructors and participants. The mesh upper reminds me of my old favorite Zumba shoes, the Nike Musique IV, which is no longer available. The Transition studio shoe is light, flexible, and breathable. The Transition studio design provides support and stability, but also allows lateral movement and just the right amount of grip need for Zumba. These shoes are readily available – at least online.

Just another reason to love Kelly Ripa!

If you use Ryka Transition for Zumba, leave a comment and let me know what you think!

kelly ripa ryka transition zumba shoe sidekelly ripa ryka transition zumba shoe