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Hundreds take part in marathon Zumba challenge in Norwich

PUBLISHED: 09:40 11 March 2012

Fundraising Zumba marathon at the Sportspark in aid of Childline. Photo: Steve Adams

Fundraising Zumba marathon at the Sportspark in aid of Childline. Photo: Steve Adams

Thousands of pounds were raised for charity as hundreds of Zumba-lovers danced their way to a new world record.

The World’s Longest Zumba Dance saw more than 600 people take part in 13 hours of non-stop classes at the Sportspark at the University of East Anglia on Saturday.

More than 70 people took part in the first class of the day at 8am and up to 60 dance enthusiasts took part every hour from then on.

It was held in aid of Childline, a free, 24-hour helpline within the NSPCC for children in danger or distress, and raised more than £2,000.

Zumba instructor Daisy Cavell, who organised the event with Sarah Jayne Yallop, said the event was “fantastic”.

“We’re ecstatic,” said the 21-year-old from Marlingford who teaches in the Attleborough area. “We’re so impressed that so many people have turned up. We’ve had some people take part for four hours at a time; it’s been really brilliant.”

Blending a mix of Latin dance steps with energetic rhythms, Zumba was created in Colombia during the 1990s. The pulse-racing, heart-thumping regime is one of the fastest growing fitness trends in the UK.

Saturday’s event saw eight instructors lead the classes - Miss Cavell and Miss Yallop plus Becky, Rachel, Debby, Nivia and Kathryn, who all teach classes in and around Norwich.

Participants donated a minimum of £5 to take part in the classes.

There were also face painters on the day and a “games zone” where spectators could play giant versions of Jenga and Connect 4.

The event was held in conjunction with Heart FM to raise funds for Childline as part of the radio station’s Have a Heart Appeal.

Childline trains voluntary counsellors to listen and, unless a child is in immediate danger, give advice and protection to their young callers in full confidence.

Have you got a story for the Evening News? Call reporter Kate Scotter on 01603 772326 or email kate.scotter@archant.co.uk.

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