The world famous Olympia Weekend was once known as a bodybuilding event, but those days are long gone. The event has emerged as a powerful gathering of all corners of the global fitness industry – a diverse celebration of all things health, nutrition, sports, apparel, fitness in a sea of events and enthusiasts. The 2023 Olympia World Fitness Expo, slated for early November in Orlando, is where fitness enthusiasts from around the world gather to enjoy themselves and each other while experiencing emerging trends in fitness, with a healthy dose of celebrities and influencers.
One of the 30 events added this year is Zumba and specifically, the Strong Nation Experience. Zumba was founded by Alberto “Beto” Pérez, Alberto Perlman, and Alberto Aghion in 2001. Even though the two programs are closely aligned, they aren’t the exact same.
The Strong Nation Experience is a full-body, High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workout that includes aspects of other disciplines such as Tai Chi, martial arts, Yoga, Pilates, and much more. Petra Robinson has been in the fitness industry for four decades and with Zumba since the beginning. She is a pioneer of both Zumba and the Strong Nation Experience. She’s traveled the world spreading the gospel of all the benefits this type of workout provides.
“It’s a really cool program that flows from one discipline to another during the routine,” said Robinson. She shared that they do this routine to music, and they reverse engineer how the routine was formulated.
“The way normal choreography is done in the industry is you have the music, then you lay in the movements to match the verse, chorus, and other parts of the music. With Strong, we create the workout scientifically, so you don’t overexert one muscle group over another, and we have a base beat we work off of. Then, we create the music to support the movements.”
The overall music encompasses instruments and beats from other cultures, and they can represent movements in the workout. A drum or cymbal may be the sound to perform a kick. Another beat may call for a stretch. While the description may appear confusing, the participants learn fast and keep up with the routine.
Robinson said, “It makes it easy for people to remember the choreography, which can make the workout that much more beneficial. They look forward to it.”
The plan has proven to be effective. Many people throughout the globe enjoy the Strong Nation Experience, and there is no standard or average enthusiast. People from all walks of life can take part and get in better shape while doing it.
“Male, female, all different body shapes and ages love it, and you can do it according to your own modification,” Robinson shared. There are even versions of seniors such as Zumba Gold, Aqua Zumba, and Zumba Step.
Robinson and Strong Nation have been involved with the Olympia before, including in Las Vegas for the 2022 Weekend, and she hopes to see even more fans attend and take part in the 2023 Experience. If you choose to take part, be ready to train because it won’t be a cakewalk.
“It’s going to be nonstop action,” she emphasized. “Anybody and everybody are welcome to jump in. We’ll probably have over 100 dancers because we want to stack the dance floor so it looks like a typical class. “We want to bring the joy, the fun, and the opportunity to wiggle and giggle.”
A training program like the Strong Nation Experience is a perfect fit for the Olympia Weekend because Robinson and her team want to do more than introduce the fans to a new workout. She wants to have people join the movement. Fans and athletes that want to get certified to teach classes in their home area would be invited to do so, and she’s offered a significant discount for those interested.
That long term reach is what makes the Olympia World Fitness Expo such a happening, and Robinson hopes other businesses and programs will join them for future years.
“We’ve had a great time with the Olympia, and it’s always been a great experience. I talk about the Olympia to anybody that listens. I really feel it’s an explosion of sports, fitness, and wellness. It’s like the best kept secret among the traditional fitness industry.”
For more information about Zumba and Strong Nation or to learn how to become an instructor, go to www.zumba.com or www.strongnation.com. Tickets for the 2023 Olympia World Fitness Expo are still available at www.mrolympia.com .