Mom Report: Zumbini at the Red Balloon

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If you are wanting to introduce your baby or tot to music, dancing and education, you've gotta give Zumbini a try!

(Feature photo by Amanda Hayward)

Meet Eva – she is 3 years old and loves to dance. She has rhythm that blows me away, and unbelievable determination for being such a tiny tot. With our busy schedule, it’s tough finding the right class. I am always on the search for dance classes to spark her interest. Like some tots, Eva can be a bit shy at first, so the right dance class means a good mix of interaction, energy and a good teacher / student connection. We tried out a trial Zumbini class at the Red Balloon Cafe + Play, and then I realized, I found a new class for my tiny dancer.

The Red Balloon is a great environment for parents to interact with their kids, while allowing them to enjoy creative play. Will, my 7 year old, discovered the play area while I joined in on Zumbini with Eva (it was a perfect setup so I can peak in on Will from classroom. Although The Red Balloon play space is for ages 6 and younger, you know your child best, so if you think they will play nicely with the littles, they are welcome to play). Our instructor was Dana Hill, a talented dance teacher, and she engaged with the babies and tots from start to finish. It was the perfect mix of mommy and me dance and play; freestyle dancing; learning; and instructor-led dance moves. My shy toddler was suddenly a Zumbini dancer as she followed the simple movements Dana demonstrated.

After learning and grooving to a dance sequence, the kids would have some cool down time and then play time with various instruments and fun props. Eva loved the colorful scarves; and she went crazy with the fun musical sticks as the kids tapped the floor while learning a fun, simple rhythm.

The gentle introduction and warm-up really helped make Eva feel comfortable from the get-go. The toddlers and parents introduced themselves in the circle. The simple, yet creative movements were perfect to keep their little attention, as they followed the dance instructors every move.

If you’re wondering if Zumbini is anything like the adult Zumba, the answer is yes, it is. In fact, it was created by Zumba and BabyFirst for ages 0 – 4 years old. Zumbini combines music, dance and educational tools for 45 minutes of non-stop bonding and fun for mom and baby or tot! If you aren’t sure if you want to register for a full session, you can take a demo class to see if it’s the right fit for your little one! If you decide to register for a session, you will receive the song/story book, a CD of all 20 original songs, digital access to all of the music on the app and a cute, plush toy for your little Zumbini dancer.

The cool thing about Zumbini classes, is they dance in all of your favorite locations – Lily Pad, Learning Through Play Cafe, Dance Concepts, Mary Riesenberg’s St. of Dance and libraries – so you can find one that is convenient for you!

Sessions last six weeks and start back up in the fall. To check out the schedule or to sign up for you first demo class, go to check out for more info or


Amanda Hayward is editor of this publication. She is from Cincinnati, Ohio, a military wife and mom of two. If you don't see her writing for Cincinnati Family, you'll find her running, juggling kids, teaching group fitness classes and cooking up healthy recipes.

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