A young woman from California has realized her dream of becoming America’s first ever Zumba instructor with Down syndrome.
Yulissa Arescurenaga, 24 is the first person with Down syndrome to become a certified Zumba instructor in the United States.
Arescurenaga participated in her first Zumba class in 2008 and loved it so much; she made it her goal to become an instructor. The 24-year-old from San Francisco, California practiced for up to six hours every day for years in order to memorize the routines.
In 2012 Arescurenaga accomplished her goal and earned her Zumba instructor certification. Now as the first Zumba instructor with Down syndrome in the United States, Arescurenaga teaches multiple classes every week in California. She even teaches classes for people with disabilities. Recently, Arescurenaga and her mom flew to Anchorage, Alaska where she led two days of dance classes for a group of 50 students.
“She was killing it,” said Liam Mamikunian, one of the students who attended Arescurenaga’s class at Service High School in Anchorage, told the paper. “She didn’t miss a beat.”
Last year, Arescurenaga met the founder of Zumba, Beta Perez at the Zumba Instructor Convention in Orlando, Florida. She even led a full class alongside of Perez while attending the convention.
Arescurenaga is full of energy when instructing her classes, she’s is an inspiration to everyone who attends her class. “She loves to put a smile on people’s faces,” her mother told Today.com. Her mother also says her daughter has the ability to connect with people on another level while instructing her classes.
Arescurenaga’s mother hopes her daughter’s passion and dedication will show others that people with Down syndrome can accomplish anything.
Her journey to become a Zumba instructor is such an inspiration; she is receiving praise from all over the internet.