LATIN beats will be ringing around Blenheim Palace once again next month as the OX5 Run starts off with a Zumba warm-up.

This year's participants will be put through the Latin-inspired dance warm-up before taking on the five-mile run around the palace grounds in Woodstock for Oxford Children's Hospital.

Zumba instructor George Martini is looking forward to putting the runners through their paces.

He said: "I first did the OX5 Run warm up five years ago and it's grown and grown.

"We started with a ten-minute warm-up and it lasts for about 30 minutes.

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"It's not just for the runners, the whole family and spectators get involved too."

Since his warm-up slot at Blenheim Palace last year Mr Martini, from Botley, has taken his Zumba classes into the John Radcliffe and Nuffield hospitals.

He visits the Nuffield once a week to take groups of children requiring physiotherapy and rehabilitation.

He said: "The children really do benefit from it.

"We can get them to move more than in their physio because of the music - it's been a huge success.

"I enjoy it, it's my time and my way of giving back."

The father-of-three will also be taking on the run himself on Sunday, March 29 to raise money.

He said: "Children are a big part of all our lives, whether you have them or have friends who do.

"We never like to hear of children being ill but at least they are in safe hands at the John Radcliffe."

"The staff are amazing, amazing people, they are very supportive."

Oxford Children's Hospital spokeswoman Sarah Vaccari said: "We are thrilled that George Martini is bringing his Zumba warm-up to the OX5 Run again this year. It wouldn’t be the same without him.

"It’s such a fun way to get everyone up and ready for the run and really adds to the whole atmosphere of the day.

"George also volunteers at the hospital so he understands what a difference fundraising events like this make to our young patients."

The event is sponsored by city recruitment firm Allen Associates for the seventh year running.

To join George and the 700 others who have already signed up go to