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Published on March 29th, 2012 | by Greg


Zumba Fitness Rush: A Solid Workout

We’re big fans of the Kinect, Mi­crosoft’s mag­i­cal-cam­era-mi­cro­phone ac­ces­so­ry for the Xbox 360. Some games sim­ply use it to add voice com­mands, like Mass Ef­fect 3 most re­cent­ly. Oth­er games re­quire it, as it is es­sen­tial to the game­play. We’ve tried out most Kinect ti­tles, and love Dance Cen­tral 1 and 2, games that tru­ly en­gage your whole body and feel nat­u­ral. But they aren’t fo­cused on ex­er­cise- the work­out is in­ci­den­tal- so we de­cid­ed to seek out a ti­tle aimed at fit­ness.

Zum­ba Fit­ness Rush takes some of the gam­play from pre­vi­ous ti­tles (Zum­ba Fit­ness 2 on the Wii, most no­tably), but adds a lot of new stuff. There are ex­tra venues, of course, but al­so more im­por­tant el­e­ments like voice con­trol (de­cent, if not strict­ly nec­es­sary) and 10 new rou­tines. There are 42 in to­tal, and that’s be­fore you in­clude any of the avail­able down­load­able con­tent (DLC).

We boot­ed up the game and jumped right in. For those un­fa­mil­iar with Zum­ba, the idea is to take latin mu­sic and rhythms and com­bine it with dan­cy work­outs. The trail­er does a bet­ter job of ex­plain­ing it than we can. Since you’re us­ing the Kinect, you sim­ply use mo­tion con­trols to go through the menus, and the sys­tem does a pret­ty good job of rec­og­niz­ing your move­ments while work­ing out. You can do a sin­gle song, take a “class”, or go through a learn­ing mode to break down the steps. And the class­es are vari­able length- choose from 20, 45, or 60 min­utes. There are some statis­tics kept with the Progress Track­er, though we would’ve liked these to be a bit more like Wii Fit.

Lo­cal mul­ti­play­er is avail­able (two si­mul­ta­ne­ous play­ers), but no oth­er on­line mul­ti­play­er op­tions are in­clud­ed un­for­tu­nate­ly. Some of the back­grounds and en­vi­ron­ments are a bit dis­tract­ing. But over­all, this is a sol­id work­out pro­gram- we end­ed up sweat­ing and com­plete­ly were un­aware of the clock. It’s fun, easy to learn, and of­fers plen­ty to come back to. If you don’t feel like head­ing to the gym or find­ing a class, but al­so en­joy some lev­el of in­struc­tion, this of­fers much bet­ter feed­back and a lot more va­ri­ety than any video. Avail­able now, on­line and in stores, for around $40.

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About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Apple’s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.

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