10 things about Masala Bhangra

Sarina Jain, creator of the dynamic Indian dance workout, tells us what Masala Bhangra does for your body

By Andrea Tim | Published: 9 Jun 2015

Video: Sarina Jain

What is Masala Bhangra?
"Masala Bhangra blends traditional steps from the Indian folk dance Bhangra along with the exhilaration of exotic Bollywood moves. Masala, meaning spicy, describes the unique twist on the Indian celebratory dance that has made it so popular among fitness, dance and yoga communities across the globe. Originally it was just a fun and rigorous workout DVD, but now Masala Bhangra has grown into a lifestyle and culture of its own – making it a mainstay in the workout world, and beyond."

How is Masala Bhangra different from other forms of dance-related exercises?
"Masala Bhangra is a programme where I ask you to channel your masculine side with Bhangra, and your feminine side with Bollywood. I take you through a journey; ask you to express yourself; let your heart go; and sweat and dance at the same time. You are expressing yourself through the dance movements! Masala Bhangra brings out different emotions for people. It's a joy to see people be moved, touched and inspired!"

What can a person doing Masala Bhangra hope to get out of the classes?
"He or she can achieve a stronger heart because of the cardio workout. People taking a Masala Bhangra class will also benefit from the freedom and exhilaration of the music and just letting go."

(Photo: Masala Bhangra Workout/Facebook)

Which parts of the body does Masala Bhangra target?
"Masala Bhangra works everything from your brain to your toes! You are mentally uplifted and you are physically challenged in a good way. Every part of you is moving. Your arms are up in the air and your legs are moving at the same time."

What's the difference between doing Masala Bhangra and just jogging or hitting the gym?
"Since Masala Bhangra is originally based on an Indian celebratory folk dance, the workout allows you to feel as though you are celebrating. When you do Masala Bhangra you are expressing yourself through the dance movements and elevating your mood while you exercise. I encourage participants to dance like no one is watching."

What fitness practices and habits should accompany Masala Bhangra?
"Just like with any other exercise programme, it is important to also maintain a healthy and well-balanced diet."

What should people bring to a Masala Bhangra class?
"Bring your heart, your soul, your sweat and an open mind! And you'll be ready to be blown away."

Where can I take Masala Bhangra classes?
Menara Wellness Centre, Bukit Jelutong, Shah Alam (Mondays, 9am)
Ladies Fitness Centre, Wisma Tanah Aina, Shah Alam (Mondays, 8.30pm)
Taman Tasik Lembah Kiara, Kuala Lumpur (Sundays, 8am)
Dream Fitness at Airport Sport Complex, Nilai (Wednesdays, 8.30pm)
Click here for contact details.

Why should I take up Masala Bhangra?
"Masala Bhangra is for everyone. It is for people who want to spice up their typical workout. It is for people who want to be transformed mentally and physically. It is for people who want to open up their minds and dance it out – Indian style!"

How did Masala Bhangra come about?
"My inspiration and commitment to health and fitness was spurred by the tragic loss of my father to cardiac arrest when I was just a teenager. I was devastated by the loss and motivated to help people lead healthier lives. I also wanted to keep my Indian culture alive while living in the United States. I began teaching fitness classes to the beat of Indian music. After earning my degree in communications from California State University, Fullerton, I founded my company Masala Dance & Fitness, Inc."

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