Diego Chantir is a super-talented, rising star in the Zumba® community, who you might recognize from his jam sessions as a Zumba Jammer™ or from the big stage at the 2018 Fitness Concert™. Behind his smiles and hot dance moves is a moving story of overcoming an injury to become the fitness inspiration he is today. Here is his story.
ZLife: Where are you from originally, and what was your childhood like?
Diego: I am from Olavarria, in the center of the province of Buenos Aires, Argentina. I had a beautiful childhood in my city, filled with many friends, playing sports… and dancing! Since I was little I was always attracted to music. My mother and two sisters taught me to dance from a very young age, and that was the beginning of my love for expressing myself through my body.
ZLife: When did you discover Zumba®?
Diego: I discovered Zumba® through Don Omar’s hit song – Zumba®! At the time, I was already teaching a number of different activities including step, Latin dance, combat cardio, and spin. Shortly after discovering Zumba®, I took my B1 instructor training with Banky Farrer in 2012.
ZLife: What is one thing people might be surprised to learn about you?
Diego: I actually studied theater, circus performance, AND physical education. I always loved sports, but after playing basketball all throughout my childhood and adolescence, it came to an end. I faced a major knee injury and I was told I would never be able to put pressure on it (run, jump, etc.) again. But, here I am despite what the doctors said!
ZLife: What has Zumba® helped you accomplish in terms of life skills and goals?
Diego: Zumba® opened up more possibilities than I ever thought I would have! Today I am living my dream, which is almost difficult to put into words. Zumba® gave me the tools I needed to make people truly happy.
ZLife: What’s your advice to people who may be afraid to try Zumba®?
Diego: Do not be afraid – it’s truly a happy hour! There is nothing better than taking care of your body and letting go to the music.