The “Twerkout,” has somehow become a new fitness craze that is currently sweeping the nation. If you are feeling sluggish, why not go for a twerkout? But the twerkout it is not inspired by Miley Cyrus, contrary to reports from The Daily Mail. Twerking on a few teddy bears on stage does not an inspiration make.
Before twerking was even given a name, it was inspired by dances from African, Calypso and Caribbean Dance Hall music. When other cultures assimilated it, it was given a label and a few celebrities, such as Ciara, Nicki Minaj and Rihanna were then attached to its name for good measure.
The word “twerk” has even earned its own official definition in the American Oxford Dictionary, as of this month:
[no object] informal
dance to popular music in a sexually provocative manner involving thrusting hip movements and a low, squatting stance:
just wait till they catch their daughters twerking to this song
twerk it girl, work it girl
1990s: probably an alteration of WORK”
Now that is the strangest definition in a dictionary, if ever there was one. But nonetheless, the twerkout is now being incorporated into dancercize classes, for the sheer energy it takes to adopt each movement. Former New Zealand athlete-turned-dance-fitness-instructor Les Mills, renowned for his BodyJam and Bodypump dance fitness workout empire, has been asked by his customers to incorporate the twerkout into his Bodypump sequences.
Mills’s BodyJam workouts, which generally take place on a large stage, in front of a massive audience, involve the demonstration of a series of broken down dance sequences, which are replayed through constant repetition, until the sequence is learned. It makes the group taking the dancercize classes feel they can take on any move that a professional dancer can and have fun while doing it.
The twerkout is a vigorous cardiovascular and toning combination workout that seems to be attracting a surprising range of women from all backgrounds and of all age groups. The popularity of this dance movement has resulted in Les Mills and other dance fitness companies adapting their names to integrate the term “Twerkout” into the title: “The Bodypump Twerkout,” or “Twerkout Fitness,” another company that also has a page on Facebook, which is cashing in on the name. Various merchandise such as tank tees are also being added to their repertoire, as perhaps twerking might be a phase that is not as likely to have as much longevity as say, Zumba Fitness, derived from Brazilian dance, which is most definitely here to stay, but only time will tell.
According to The Daily Mail, Mills’s version of the twerkout has included a variation of twerking steps that may or may not twerk for you – namely the “jiggle”, the “wobble” and the “shake.” Designed for fun as well as for fitness, the twerkout claims to burn off approximately 530 calories in a 55-minute class and studies by Les Mills have revealed that twerking also improves pelvic bone density, when done regularly. This might explain the enrolment of ladies of a certain age, who might be prone to osteoporosis whilst going through menopause, so increased bone density is always a good thing here to avoid fractures and joint replacements during the golden years.
For a stronger core and toned, tight limbs, I would still recommend ballet barre work and a combination of Yoga and Pilates, however, a great deal of fun can be had from taking a dancercize class. I had the best instructor for that ever, prior to becoming a parent. But for those who are still might be wondering what on earth twerking is, or even if you think you would like to give it a go in the privacy of your own living room before embarking on a class, you can now find out whether twerking is for you or not.
Howcast, the Youtube channel that has been regularly used by people wanting to learn how to do the “Dougie,” the “PSY Gangnam Style” and the splits, among other things, has thoughtfully offered a “how to” video, created by a nice lady called “Tweeti”, who can show you how to get the best out of your twerking experience:
- Put your hands on your hip bones, bend your knees, turning your toes outwards, keeping your knees over your toes;
- To twerk forward first, press your thumbs into your back bone at your hips, which helps move your hips forward;
- If you want the hips to go backward, press your fingers into your hips and pull backwards;
- For optimum twerking action, place your hands on your knees, wrists facing outward as you squat and stick out your behind, repeating the action;
- Now speed up action to music and increase that pelvic bone density!
Now did that twerk for you?
If you are feeling sluggish, why not go for a twerkout?
Written by: Brucella Newman