About 3 years ago, one of our therapist was treating a lady by the name of Maria Montero, a banker and a part-time Zumba instructor, who had a knee injury. She responded quite well to treatment, and after couple of weeks she was ready to go back to participating in her Zumba classes. I remember her coming up to me at the end of her treatment and asking me if I ever thought about doing Zumba in my facility. I told her that there was some interest on my end, and about a week later she did a private Zumba class for me…the rest is history.
She has been as important of an employee as anyone that I have had over the past four years. I have helped her very little with the development of her Zumba program. She has literally grown her Zumba following on her own. She has her own website, her own following, and it’s absolutely amazing on what she has done. The success of her classes has allowed her to become a full time Zumba instructor, and become very well known in the community for helping lots of people develop an active, healthy lifestyle. At our facility, she has about 20-30 ladies combined, that come to her two classes.Here are some pictures of the two classes that she has on a weekly basis at our facility.
Zumba Evening class:
This picture is from her Zumba Gold class on Tuesday mornings:
The truth of the matter is that my respect and admiration for her has not come because of her successful classes that she currently teaches. The respect and admiration came about two and half years ago on a Thursday evening.
At that point, Maria had started classes for about six months. Hardly anyone was coming. She was able to get one or two people in her class and then she would have many days where there would be nobody that would show up. She would come at her appointed time, set up everything to be ready to go, have her playlist that she worked so diligently on, and no one would show up…time and time again that would happen to her. I continued to encourage her, telling her that over time, people would come. I don’t think she really needed it, but I just felt bad for her, that she was putting so much effort into it, and nothing was materializing yet.
So back to that Thursday evening… I just finished seeing my last patient at the office. I was backed up with paperwork and other managerial things, so I went to our kitchen area, and brought my notes and started to get caught up. I heard the music going on and I heard Maria being engaged in the music. I thought that she must of had a good class out there, because it seemed like she was very lively and engaged. About 30 minutes later, when I finished my notes, I slightly opened the door, to realize that there was nobody out there. She was doing her class routines, and perfecting all of her moves that she would do if she had a full class.
That day has always been etched in my mind of what type of individual she is. This is what we all should strive to be as physical therapists. Whether we are busy or not, you can always show the same type of passion every day regardless of how your situation is. Maria has exemplified that… Maybe we can learn something from her. Here is a link to the testimonials from the ladies that take her class. I’m glad Maria never quit…and even more happy to see someone that has such passion for what she does.
Have a great weekend!