When I first heard the name Isheeta Ray for the next Style Talk series, like a curious cat, I quickly went through her Instagram account in order to structure the perfect questions for her! While doing my typical scrolling over the internet, I learnt a lot about Isheeta Ray and her journey has truly been an inspiring one.
‘A Bengaluru based engineer turned fitness coach, who quit the 9-5 rat race to pursue her passion to the fullest’, are just mere words to describe Isheeta and her charismatic and motivating personality. In today’s time you get to analyze a lot through social media channels and when I thoroughly went through Isheeta’s social media profiles, my mind was blown.
Isheet Ray’s social media is full of shots from her dance classes. In some posts she can be seen enjoying, while in some she is rigorously training without losing the smile and energy. Isheeta is not only synonymous with high-energy but a motivator who understands the physical capabilities of every individual and pushes them forward to get the best in their fitness journey.
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The Format Head at Cult Fit, Isheeta has simple ideologies where she wants people to embark on a fitness journey infused with fun which comes through dance in the most effective manner. In a talk with us, Isheeta unveils a part of her life and inspires us to aim for a healthy future.
What inspired you to become a dance fitness coach at Cult Fit?
I used to be a Zumba fitness instructor before I got into Cult Fit. My inspiration to get into Zumba fitness was my coach, Antaragua Chaudhary. When I saw her on stage making people dance, helping them go stress free and making them feel happy, I thought to myself why not give it a try and become an instructor? I became a Zumba fitness trainer, took my Zumba license, and then during COVID I started my online classes. I got a call from Shetty and she asked me to be the lead trainer for the Cult app.
What are the key benefits of integrating dance into a fitness regime?
Music plays a very integral part in our lives. We have a very emotional connect with it which at times helps us calm down, boost our energy and what not! We all love music and it takes our stress away. Moreover, it is easy to groove to the music than running on a treadmill with music on. We are always ready to break the leg to a tune rather than cycling on it. For cardio activities instead of going to a gym and using machines, why not dance and use fitness movements, functional movements like squats, lunges, knee ups and more. Dance fitness, as a format, appears to be looking after cardiovascular endurance of people. But many functional movements test your strength, your flexibility, your endurance and more.
What methods do you use to motivate and encourage your participants to stay committed to their fitness journey?
Whenever I take online classes or go to the studio, I make sure to acknowledge the effort that people have put in. I always tell them that they’ve already won half the battle by showing up. I appreciate and congratulate them for their effort. I also tell them that I’m going to see them in the next class so that we can together move forward.
How do you stay up to date with the latest trends and developments in dance fitness?
Growth happens when you continue to learn. Dance fitness as a format is very vast. There are no boundaries to dance fitness. Every dance fitness instructor or a Zumba instructor, they are all very different in their own ways. I believe that updating the playlist is very important for a dance fitness instructor. Depending on your audience, you focus on a particular rhythm in order to make people interested in it. I also experiment with formations and the pep talks so that people stay entertained and the class does not grow boring to them.
How do you keep participants engaged and excited to attend your classes regularly?
My favorite thing to do in the class is to make people feel the vibe of every song. Once you get a hang of the song, you don’t have to be pushed to dance. When I’m taking a class in a studio, I call out people to dance with me on the stage in order to motivate them and the rest of the people who are on their fitness journey.
How do you prevent injuries and ensure safety while teaching high energy dance workouts?
Before starting a class, I always ask people if anyone has any kind of medical injuries or any health issues. If I get to know beforehand, I give them some advice and structure the training according to their comfort. Even during the workout, I look keep a watch on that person and guide them regarding the movements that will be beneficial to them or how to improvise certain movements to suit them better. Keeping an eye on everybody is important, and knowing your own basics helps you in the long run.
Isheeta Ray is an icon who is intertwined with dance fitness and there’s no stopping to her. Her intense love for fitness, Zumba, dance and music not only screams at us to get onboard but also boosts our morale to always aim for the sky.