Standing at only five-feet-five-inches, Rosa Acosta demands attention with her strong personality, her ample curves and overall toned body. Eighteen years as a ballet dancer—as well as her years as a fitness competitor—have helped Acosta get to where she is today. Throughout her years in the industry, you can imagine how many times Acosta has been asked about her fitness regimen. And, it is because of this that the savvy girl from the Island of Quisqueya created her fitness company. Her workout videos on YouTube have been welcomed well by the public, and serve as a precursor to her upcoming—and highly anticipated—workout DVD due out soon.
BlackMen: Let’s begin by talking about your fitness company and how it came about.
Rosa Acosta: I’ve always had a passion for fitness. I was a fitness competitor a while ago. I was a ballet dancer for over 18 years. I did yoga, pillates, you name it. I started realizing that a lot of people always asked me “How do you stay in shape?”—so I came up with [the fitness project]. Right now I’m finishing the editing on my workout DVD. I have a workout clothing line coming out. Everything should be out in about one or two months. I also have some mini-clips on YouTube, so girls can take a look at those. Later on I’m going to be dropping more stuff like recipes. I also have a lot of personal trainer friends that I invite to join in. I’ll post different stuff. I also have my certification as a personal trainer. I’m not fucking bullshitting [laughs]. Everybody feels like they want to tell people what to do, but I wanted to be certified. I wanted people to understand that just because you lost five pounds you can give anybody advice. Fitness is way more serious than what people really think. I’m also taking my certification for zumba in May . I’m not really teaching anybody right now. I’m just collecting certifications of all kinds. I’m also a massage therapist.
Now that you mentioned zumba, I was actually curious on whether you were going to incorporate your dance background into the workouts on the DVD?
Well, this one that I’m coming out with first is for beginners. Even when I was shooting it, people who were on set were asking “How can you do that? Oh my God, I can’t do that!” This is totally for beginners and I do have at the end of each routine a movement that is like a challenge movement. It will be like something that you’ll see in the next video, but you can start working on it from that point.
After you master all of the other stuff, this is the next step. There will be one for each exercise. Every time you finish an exercise for a part of the body, I will give you a challenge for it. They’re not only things that you learn from a personal trainer, the movements are kind of like dance inspired. It’s like things that you do in ballet, but if you do them in repetition it can help to shape your body in a better form. It’ll help you get more strength or electicity. It’s basically a combination of everything that has helped me to get to where I am— whether it’s gym, whether it’s dance, whether it’s yoga, whether it’s pilates. So there’s a lot of things in there that are not only basic personal trainer movement, there’s other things also.
Cool! Where can our readers go to purchase the DVD when it comes out?
For sure, for sure it’s going to be on RosaAcosta.com. And we’re working on other deals right, and hopefully we’ll be able to bring it out in a bunch of other places. But, everything Rosa Acosta related can be found on RosaAcosta.com.
How will you go about marketing the DVD? Will you be touring to promote it?
I’m working with a few fitness companies that they offer touring, so we’re trying to work a deal with them. Definitely, we may be able to do a few small tours. But, I am trying to work less and make more. The less I have to show up, the better for me.
That’s very smart.
Yeah, I don’t mind a few signings, a few little things, but really don’t feel like being on tour. I am going to attend a few things like fitness expos. So I’ll do a few, but honestly, I just don’t want to be on…I did this already. I’ve hosted for five weeks straight, stayed home for one week, then did it again for another five weeks. I’ve been doing that for the past three years. The reason why I’m trying to move on and start doing different things is to stop doing that actually.
Going back to your dance background. I heard that you are also certified to be a dance instructor. First off, what type of dancing are you certified to teach? Ballet?
Do you have plans on going back and teaching classes, or maybe open up a school of your own?
No [laughs]. No, I did that. I own a school in my country. I worked for other schools teaching, and I’m going to tell you something… That’s one of the jobs that you can’t do it for the money. If I open a school here, the little girls that are bad and will never be dancers, I have to admit them because I need to make a profit off my dance school. The purpose of teaching is doing it the right way. It’s really annoying for me to go to a class full of girls – like 30 girls – and I know there’s not one that has the potential to become a dancer ever.
It’s a really tough job. It takes you ten years to make a dancer.
That’s not something that you just teach somebody for five months, and then she’s a dancer. It’s like a whole other monster, and again, that’s a lot of work and I’m trying to work less to make more. I already did that anyway. I taught for seven years. I had my own school in [Dominican Republic].
I actually skipped a question. Going back to your fitness. Black Men wanted me to get some quick fitness tips from you for the readers.
Well, when people ask me for quick tips I tell them “Quick is getting sick.” You think quick and you’re going to drop ten pounds. Now, what’s the healthiest way to lose weight or what’s the smartest way to do it. The problem with people is that they want to do this quick, but they don’t want to do something that is going to last them a lifetime.
They don’t want to change their lifestyle. I don’t give people quick tips. There’s no magic. Some people believe in going to the gym on Friday, then going back to being fat on Monday. I don’t believe in that. I believe in changing your lifestyle and creating good habits.
But, I mean, things that you can start doing is drinking a lot of water, cut off sodas, eat everything organic, workout everyday. Can you do 20 minutes or 30? Some people say, oh I only have 20 minutes today. I’ll leave it for tomorrow when I have an hour. But, those 20 minutes can make a difference. In fact, it’s shown that the quickest and stronger your workout is, the better you’ll be for the rest of the day. So if I work out really hard for like 30 minutes, that’s better than doing a lazy and long workout. You’ll keep burning fat through the day if you do something short, instead of walking on the treadmill for an hour. If you’re trying to get the best of it, then a short but really intense workout is what you should go with.
Is that something the will be in your DVD? Short workouts?
Yeah, I have everything quick. Like a quick set for your arms and your upper body, a quick set for your abs, and a quick set for your legs.
I’m going to try to breakdown certain tips, but there’s nothing quick like magic that’s going to do it. But you’re going to see the results if you’re consistent. Even though it’s really about the way you feel.
You may not look that different, but it’s the way you feel. There’s so much ignorance as far as fitness, so many misconceptions. We live in a world where I feel that people are afraid of muscles on a girl. We’d rather not be toned because we feel we’ll look like a man. I don’t know where it’s written that muscles only belong on men. A woman can have a defined shape, and still look sexy and still have curves.
Your videos on YouTube, are you getting a lot of hits off that?
Yeah, we actually have a lot of hits. I have to move the fitness from my regular channel, which has thousands of other things. I have to move it. I did a fitness YouTube that’s only for the fitness stuff. We did lose a few thousands of hits, but it doesn’t matter because I know that people have been watching them. It’s doing amazing. We just launched this new YouTube channel, and it’s doing so good. Girls seem to really like it. They feel motivated. It’s truly amazing. I’m glad that I can do something to inspire others to be in shape and take control of their lives, and their health and their bodies.
My next questions are for the dudes reading this right now. I know they’d kill me if I let you go without asking these. Are you single?
I’m not [laughs].
Do you find it difficult maintaining a relationship with your busy schedule?
Not at all. I’m going to tell you something, I’m in the relationship of my dreams right now.
It’s been over a year. We haven’t had any arguments. We just understand each other. We are on the same level as far as everything.
I wish that everybody could be in this type of relationship. Other people do love drama, but…man, this is really good. Somebody that’s not only your best friend but you can see yourself with that person for a long time. It’s just really really good. Can’t complain.
What did he do to gain your attention and make a good impression?
I really just think he was being himself. I actually didn’t pay that much attention to him at first [laughs]. I met him on a plane, and he was talking a lot, so I fell asleep. I’m not really used to talking.
I’m not really friendly when I’m out of my house. But, he was respectful. It didn’t seem like he tried too hard. He was just being himself. Being yourself can take you a long way.
Are looks important?
Looks? [Laughs]. No, well yes and no. Yes, because everybody needs to look clean. You need to look presentable. I want somebody that takes care of themselves. Now if you were born ugly, there’s nothing we can do. If you were born unattractive to me, there’s nothing I can do. But I find myself attracted to a lot of guys that might not be what people think is cute. In other words, I’ve had a bunch of ugly motherfuckers.
My friends make fun of my tastes. It’s all about the chemistry.
Sometimes I have chemistry with someone that looks almost like a monkey. I might meet the guy that’s tall with muscles and handsome, but we might not have chemistry. I’ve had guys that I know to world are not handsome, but I like them. So to that question, I will probably say no. Also, I am attracted to older guys. Tall, muscular guys with what some might call swag may not be my guy. I like them to be a little more refined, looks like he has a little mileage. Looks a little bit more elegant, more simple and less flashy. I would be more inclined to that.
Is there an age range you like to stay in?
I used to say 30 and older, but I’m 27 now – about to be 28 – so now
30 is so young. I’m probably like 40 and up, but I’ll take something really good in the late 30s. [Laughs].
Is career and money important?
I mean whatever it is that you do, you need to be profitable because I don’t want to support a guy. I mean I like a guy that has his own the same way I have my own. I don’t need anybody to pay my rent or my car or my things. So definitely. I want a guy that is doing something, something good and is also something profitable. You don’t have to be a millionaire, but you need to be able to hold your own because I don’t want to be that girl that is going to pay for your rent. Now, if somehow my man one day can’t, I’m here for him. The same way that I expect that if one day I’m sick he will be there for me. But definitely, I would like a guy that we can go to dinner and he can pay, not just pay half. Not all the times though, because sometimes I give presents. I give really nice presents. I’ll take you to dinner. I don’t mind paying for dinner here and there. I’ll do things, but I need to see those things go the other way.
As far as career and money goes, being in the industry and I’m sure a number of them have hit on you. Do you prefer a guy in the spotlight, or do you prefer somebody not in the industry?
Well, I haven’t dated anybody in the industry, but I don’t have anything against it. I mean I like guys that are over 40. I don’t think there’s any rapper over 40 or any athletes over 40—maybe actors.
But the fact that I’m into a specific type of man, they’re definitely not in the entertainment business. I don’t have anything against the entertainers. They’re great. I know a lot of them and they are very nice, and some of them are really good friends of mine, but I don’t see myself being attracted to them. So I’m going to have to go with a more regular type of guy.
The theme of this issue is how sex is one of the most powerful forces in media and how it pretty much controls everything we see, hear and do. Do you think that sex and power go hand-in-hand?
They could, but there’s some other things linked to power that’s stronger than sex. But definitely, sex is a big force. It catches peoples’ attention. These days people want the controversy, people want the sexual context, they want to see the violence. They don’t want nobody doing good, nobody doing charity work. They want to see people pulling hair and fighting and spitting in each others’ faces, and sex. They want to see all that stuff. So it is linked to power but it isn’t the only thing linked to power.