I believe first time moms have incredible intentions of wanting to do everything with their babies. Being one of these “I’m gonna do it all” moms myself, I was determined to sign up for everything I heard about while I was pregnant. From signing classes to Mother Goose classes to swimming lessons, I wanted to do it all. Naturally, in the chaos of sleepless nights, bouts of crying and dirty diapers , I didn’t actually get around to fulfilling many of these good intentions. Until one day my husband and I were visiting friends of ours that had just had a newborn themselves. Andrew, our baby boy , was about three months old at the time, and this new mom mentioned that she would be signing up for a ‘Salsa Babies’ class, an exercise class where you strap your baby into a carrier and learn how to Latin dance. This was one of those classes I had heard about during my pregnancy, so the thought had already been lingering in the back of my mind. This was the motivation I needed. I decided to take the plunge before Andrew became too heavy to do it at all.
After my first class I was hooked, and Andrew smiled and squealed through the entire thing! Both he and I absolutely loved it! In fact, we don’t know what we’d do without our weekly Salsa Babies fix. The most surprising part is that on top of learning salsa, meringue, cha cha and listening to invigorating music, the class is an amazing work out! I have to admit, I was not expecting to work up such a sweat. This is a huge bonus because, after all, who isn’t interested in shedding those pregnancy pounds?
Our instructor’s enthusiasm is contagious. Even though we would all like to dance as fabulously as her, non-dancers have no fear: the steps are easy enough to follow and let’s not forget, we’re not there to become professional dancers. I’ve told all of my friends who are having babies and any new moms I meet, even total strangers, that this is a must-do. Not only is it great fun, it gives me a chance to hang out and spend fun time with my baby. He gets to meet other babies, and I get the chance to meet and connect with other moms, make new friendships and learn about other programs and activities in our community. The first year with a new baby can sometimes be lonely and isolating and this is the best way I’ve found to avoid that ‘cabin fever’ feeling that can creep up on you at times. Most of all, it is always nice just to chat with somebody who is in the same boat as you and can relate to what you’re feeling. For me, it’s about having a good time with my baby, and for this reason I highly recommend it to all moms.
I must admit, at first I thought I would only last through one six week session. I didn’t think my back would survive a whole hour of having Andrew strapped on to me while we danced. Well, we are now into our third session with Andrew weighing in at 18 lbs, and trust me – I have no thoughts of quitting anytime soon. As long as I can carry him, to Salsa Babies we will go! It will be a sad day when I am finally forced to turn in my maracas and say ‘Adios’ to Salsa Babies. Who knows, ‘Salsa Tots’? Hmmmm…now there’s an idea.