ZUMBATOMIC & PARTIES incl. weddings!

I In Schools

I have just completed 11 weeks of zumba with the lovely children of Compton Primary School. I went in for a couple of hours, every Wednesday afternoon, covering PPA time for 2 classes (4 in total, starting with Key Stage 1 the first term and then doing Key Stage II children).
I have really loved this experience and would be delighted to 'help out' at any other schools that would like to offer zumba to their children. Here are some of the comments the children wrote down for me:
'I love zumba because I learn lots of new dances. My favourite is Bollywood. Missy Sue is very nice and a great teacher. Zumba is very good exercise' Emily
'I absolutely loved doing zumba and my mum was so jealous! Zumba has taught me lots of different songs and styles from all over the globe. Also I enjoyed doing something different to what we ususally do at school.'
'Zumba is amazing! I lie zumba because we get all excited and we all get alot of exercise.' Harry
'I found zumba fun and entertaining as there are lots of jazzy-like songs. My faourite song was the bollywood as I like the 'twist the light bulb' move. I also like the Scottish dancing as its cool.'
'Zumba is amazing and extraordinary I wish I could do it every day!' 

I also work at nursery schools - Itchen Abbas and Weeke. I absolutely love both and would like to add on/find some more adorable penguins! 

I'm a fully qualified primary school teacher in addition to licensed Zumbatomic Instructor - so if you would like your children to experience the fun of zumba, do get in touch.
Following are 2 references:
1.  From Weeke:

'The children really look forward to their Zumba lessons and they all love Sue who makes sure every child gets involved' 

Rachel Skinner, Manager Triangle Pre School, Weeke 

2. From Itchen Valley Montessori

'At Itchen Valley Montessori we enjoy Zumba with Sue Russell each week. I have no hesitation in recommending her Zumba session. Our children are aged 2 to 5 and love the music and enjoy the wide selection of dances. The sessions are able to be adapted to all ages and cover a large number of areas of learning. We have enjoyed working with Sue on the planning of the sessions to make sure that each child's individual interests are followed. This is supported by Sue's interest in developing a love of creativity and joy of movement in each child. Examples of this are the use of props and dressing up, chart music requested by the children and adapting dances to cope with Special Needs.
If you have an questions or if I can be of any help please do not hesitate to contact me.
Caroline Butcher

I've just completed a day of zumbaing at Harestock Primary School - actually, yesterday afternoon and this morning (I think if I'd done it morning and afternoon they would have had to stretcher me out!)
Both Key Stages - I and II - AMAZING! Still on cloud nine after such a wonderful experience. Kids are so upfront and honest - so full of joy! Their lovely comments re: how much they enjoyed our half hour sessions (x 5 this morning, back to back!!) still ringing in my ears.
Here they are (taken from a Comments Sheet I asked teachers/children to fill in)
Key Stage I
Yr 1 - "Loved it, all able to follow and pick up the moves, would've liked longer"
Yr 2 - "Great fun, all could join in as it was easy to follow! Good choices that the children knew!"
Key Stage II
Yrs 3/4 - "Children loved it. One child said it was better than golden time! Teacher thought it was fun"
Yrs 3/4 - "Very good. Great fun. Challenging but involved all children. Good pace."
Isla - Yr 3 "It was fun because we got in the feel of the beat of the music"
Jonathan Yr 4 - "The energy made it fun. I got lost in the music and the movement"
Yr 3/4 Summary "All enjoyed the session. Everyone joined in even the reluctant members - 'That was the best fun I've had for ages' from one boy! Thank you - a very worthwhile form of exercise for all ages"
Yr 5/6 - Children: "Fun" "Energetic" "Great" "You'll get fit" "Alot of moves but such a great laugh" "Exciting - able to express yourself" "Loved the music" " Active and fun" "Easy to do" "Really fun"
          - Staff: "Not too complicated which meant all could follow routines. Good music choices."
Needless to say, I'm totally up for more! So if you are a teacher reading this, do please see if there is any interest at your school. The kids honestly have a ball -as do the teachers!!
I charge the same as I would if I was doing supply teaching - easier all round to get paid this way.

The following are general notes about Zumbatomic in Schools

Notes to children - what they need to know:

  1. You will need to change into gym gear – sensible shoes like trainers are very important. Some of you may in time want to get proper dance sneakers but these aren’t vital to begin with.
  2. You will need to bring a plastic bottle of water – not fizzy, just plain water. I always drink a whole bottle at my classes – not all in one go, but certainly by the end of the hour, maybe finishing it off soon afterwards. On the one occasion I didn’t do this, I got a bad headache. This was cecause my body got dehydrated. That means I didn’t drink enough and, after sweating for an hour, my body said to me ‘Replace that water you have sweated off or you will suffer!’ And I did!
  3. We will do a number of dance routines – of course! That’s what you’re there for! I will choose music that I know you will love – including some of your chart favourites! These chart numbers tend to have slightly easier moves; but in the case of the zumba routines, I will break down every routine we do so you know exactly what you are doing.
  4. And we will have some games – all of which are great fun!
  5. I will need to know before the classes start who is picking you up – so I will have a register at the beginning to meet you; and a kind of register at the end to make sure you and I know who is collecting you. If there are any changes to this, I must be notified. Because your safety is obviously my number one concern.

But what is almost as important is – you having an amazing fun time. I absolutely love dance and I really believe DANCE is for EVERYONE! It’s not just for the super-fit. It’s not just for the super-coordinated! You do not have to have ever been to a dance lesson before in your life to attend my club. I want you to come and enjoy moving to the music. It’s not a competition. We are not working towards some grand performance. And that is perhaps one of the best things about zumba classes. How many of you have been to dance classes where you have gone over and over the same move til you have got it absolutely right? Well, we don’t do that. We just enjoy. It’s not about getting it absolutely right. Yes, I will give you the moves – there are lots of them – but if you do them slightly differently then that’s fine! Dance is about expressing yourself – and we all move in slightly different ways. We all hear a beat and we feel it in totally different ways. I want you to feel and enjoy the music in a totally non scary way – I am here to show you how much fun dance can be how. It’s something we can all do – and something you can continue doing for the rest of your life. I have ladies and gents of your grandparents age – all jigging around enjoying themselves!

Notes to Parents

Zumbatomic is, like Zumba, about the music. If it’s great music, you want to dance; and if you’re dancing, you’re exercising.  People come to zumba because they want to – it’s quite unlike forcing yourself to go down the gym! The benefits to kids are infinite – it’s not just about ‘keeping fit’ or losing weight. It’s an excellent way to focus their minds and improve their self-confidence, whilst boosting metabolism and enhancing coordination.

I could quote you endless statistics and facts on the benefits of exercise – I’ll save that for another day! For me, dance is about feeling good about yourself. There can be few other forms of exercise that have such an uplifting effect. This is, of course, largely down to the music – which covers just about everything! Along with the Latin American – salsa, merengue, cumbia, reggaeton – there’s Bollywood, Far Eastern (Belly-Dancing) Greek, Spanish Flamenco and of course plenty of popular chart music. I always stress to students that ‘they can dance like there is nobody watching’ – because there isn’t! Everyone feels music differently and this is reflected in how they move. There is no right or wrong way – we are not performing for others, we are purely and simply enjoying dance for dance sake. I cannot stress this enough. There will be children who have attended dance classes before but zumbatomic is for all abilities – your child does not have to be super-fit or super-coordinated. Zumbatomic is for all children – to discover how much fun and enjoyment can be derived from dance, and hopefully take that with them throughout the rest of their lives.

What do children need to bring to class?

  1. The usual gym wear (trackie bottoms, or leggings and t.shirts plus trainers). Dance sneakers, tap or jazz shoes are good but not essential. I can explain the advantages of these to anyone who is interested.
  2. A bottle of plain water. The children will need to drink – again I will explain to them why this is important.
  3. A light snack. I would suggest a banana – great for filling the gap and providing lots of energy. After a day at school I think they will need something so please stress they need to keep this til the end of the day!
  4. If a child brings an inhaler, the child must be able to use it for themself. This is standard procedure.

I do need to be informed of any medical condition that your child has.

I need to know who is collecting each child. This, as with medicines, must be stated clearly on the ‘registration form’ which asks for contact details etc. If circumstances change during the day, and somebody else will be collecting, then the office must be informed.

Punctuality re: collection time would be greatly appreciated.

I am sure your child will love Zumbatomic! I stumbled across Zumba 5 years ago in the United States, where I was living at the time – and once I’d started going to Zumba at my local gym (Boston Sports Club) I just couldn’t stop! On returning to the UK I knew life would be intolerable without Zumba so I set up classes at local halls and haven’t looked back since! Zumba ticks all the boxes for me – it has the widest possible range of music to choose from so you can never get bored (as you might with one particular genre) and it truly is for everyone – whatever age, size, ability, level of fitness – everyone can do it at their own level – it is totally all-embracing and a wonderful way to meet other people, to laugh and have fun!

As a primary school teacher of many years, I can’t wait to share Zumbatomic with children – I just know kids will love it and I am very excited about teaching it. I used to run an afterschool Aerobics Club  - Spice Girls, Robbie Williams, Blue …..! The kids loved it! So I am sure Zumbatomic will be just as popular.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me – email: sue@plays-r-ussell.com or telephone 07947410394 – always happy to talk zumba!

If you want to see for yourselves what Zumba is about, feel free to come to any of my classes – all listed on my website www.zumba-around-winchester.com – daytime and nighttime zumba available, plus Zumba Gold classes for senior citizens. I cover all generations!

Hope the above helps and look forward to meeting you and your child in the future.

Keep dancing!

Sue Russell


'Thank you so much for making Maeve's day so special: she adores you. Your enthusiasm knows no bounds, and you left us all with a spring in our step, and a smile on our faces. I would not hesitate to recommend you to friends and family looking for an idea for a fun filled party that gets everyone on the dance floor!' - this feedback was from my last party, held June 2014 (huge thank you to Helen, lovely mum who wrote above - it was a pleasure!)

Dear Sue, Just wanted to say- My son goes to Montessori and takes part in your Zumba class on a Friday - he loves it to the moon and back he tells me! And on a Saturday and Sunday evening we are treated to a glimpse of the moves! And can I say how great he looks! The tapping oF his foot and superman is lovely! Thank you!

The following is the information sheet and form that I send out:


ZUMBATOMIC PARTIES @ £60 for an hour

What to expect!


I have, of course, a selection of Zumba tunes that I use during class. But as it’s a party and lots of the children won’t necessarily know these tunes, I will do a selection of songs they will all know – including such favourites as Hokey Cokey, Head Shoulders Knees and Toes etc.

I am happy to run through choice of music with you beforehand. I have an extensive playlist but recognise that (a) I can’t fit in 100 plus numbers/routines in an hour! (b) Not all my music may be to your taste (c) Your child may well have a favourite song which you would like me to include.

Party Games

There will also be party games, like Musical Statues, so hopefully something for everyone – even the most shy and retiring. I have never yet known a child not to respond to music!


It may be a good idea to break up the hour with a little drink intermission though having drinks to hand throughout the hour would be a good thing too – some children can work up quite a sweat! And I always have a bottle of water to hand. I always stress the importance of staying hydrated – it’s no fun having a headache following exercise.

Suitable clothing

My only stipulation would be – no high heels!!

(a)        They are not great to dance in

(b)        Most halls prohibit their being worn anyway.

I would hope that parents would want to join in – they can’t usually help themselves! And it’s always nice for the children to see adults .. in another light (I’m choosing my words carefully here!)

I am totally happy to fit in with your requirements. Please don’t hesitate to chat things over with me beforehand. This is your party – I will do whatever I can to make my contribution as fun as possible. As an ex-primary school teacher of many years, I know how individual children are – there is no template to work from – every child is unique and I will do my best to tailor the party to your child.

Should you wish to read any more about Zumbatomic, check out the Zumbatomic section of my website www.zumba-around-winchester.com  And do ring me on 0947410394 or email me sue@plays-r-ussell.com if you have any further questions.

As a qualified Zumbatomic Instructor I obviously have insurance but as there are many different ages at a family party, I would ask you to stress to those present that they take part at their own risk. Sorry, this sounds a little ‘dramatic’ but it’s the world we live in – ‘fraid I have to make this clear.

If you could fill in the attached form and send it back to me before the day of the party I would be very grateful.

I also require a 10% deposit up front and the balance to be paid 4 weeks before the party date.

I look forward to hearing from you. Please ring/email me if there is anything else you would like to ask me. Always happy to talk Zumba!

Best wishes

Sue Russell




(with Sue Russell, 29 Stoney Lane, Winchester SO22 6DP                Tel 07947410394 Email sue@plays-r-ussell.com Website: www.zumba-around-winchester.com )

My Zumbatomic Party will be on __________________________(date)

At __________________________ (starting time of hour of zumba)

The venue will be ___________________________________________

The party is for ________________________________(child’s name)

Who will be ____________ (years old) on this birthday.

I enclose deposit of £6.

I enclose balance of £50.

(Please tick one of the above; obviously if you wish to make the payment of £60 that is fine though any payment is non-refundable).

I agree to inform all party participants that they take part at their own risk.

My contact details are (please print):

Name: _____________________________________________

Address: ___________________________________________


Telephone Number: ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­__________________________________

Email Address: ______________________________________

Signature: ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­__________________________________________


I am happy to offer my services for anyone wanting zumba at their party. This is still in the 'thinking out stage' but rough plan is as follows:
Pary holder hires hall and dj. 
I provide evening's playlist - lots of great dancing music - plus an hour's zumba, split into two half hour sessions.
Evening will go something like this.
7.30 - 8pm Disco
8 - 8.30 pm ZUMBA
8.30 - 9pm Disco
9 - 9.30 ZUMBA
9.30 to rest of night DISCO
Charge: £90 for whole evening