We have all done it. We make a decision to eat better, get more exercise and to lose weight. We do well for a little while. But, soon adding the extra activities into our routine is just too hard. One reason for this is that we do not enjoy the activity we try to work into our schedule. Yes, we may enjoy a walk in the park on a warm Saturday, but walking as a form of exercise means doing it often and increasing our time doing it. The effort seems too hard for the reward.
This is the very reason why many people choose a weekly or bi-weekly dance class instead of traditional exercise. It is fun, it takes less time, and we improve with time. Dancing burns calories, tones muscles, and lets us be part of a team. Many dance moves are considered cardio aerobic moves. They give you the same benefit as an aerobic workout!
Below we will explain a couple of different moves that will help you reach your fitness goals. We encourage you to explore this topic online and in your local dance studios.
Our examples utilize Hip Hop for the cardio benefits, and ballet for muscle training.
Grapevine and Hop
Stand with your feet a few inches apart. Clasp your hands behind your back (you can practice with your hands-free until you get used to the movements). Step your left foot to the left, step your right foot behind your left, and step your left foot out once more. Then jump up and clap simultaneously. Do the same steps going to the right. Here is a slow moving tutorial to help you get started.
Okay, dance is great exercise. Aerobics are great exercises, but, are you ready for the combination that is sweeping the nation? You need to try Zumba. In the 1990’s a Colombian dancer named Alberto Perce choreographed a dance program that would be fun, invigorating, and intense. The music and the moves give you an entire body workout with focus on the core of your body, but it is so fun you do not realize it!
It will take anyone a while to get this down, but even beginners cannot wait to go again. The program is both high and low intensity. This allows you to have your “cool-down” periods in the program. Health benefits include cardio workout, flexibility, concentration on belly fat removal, hips, and abs.
Across the nation, instructors are being certified to teach Zumba classes in record numbers. Zumba is the hottest revival of working out we have seen in years. You will soon be in the best shape of your life and enjoying your new hobby, but, don't take our word for it. Try it for yourself!
The balance is also known as the "waltz." It is a three-step combination in which the dancer steps to the side with one foot, lifts onto the ball of the second foot from behind the ankle, then replaces weight on the ball of the first foot to begin again on the other side. Here is a tutorial for the balance. Please note, with practice you can do this with handstands and forearms.
What You Need
You need to find a dance studio that teaches the type of dance you are interested in. You should try to get some of your friends to join with you. If they do not, you will find plenty of people with your same passion at the class. Everyone who joins a dance class is not there to go on a world tour. Some just want to have fun.
Try various types of dance before you decide on what you want to learn. You can always grow into the harder choices. If you have medical problems check with your doctor before you begin a dance style like Hip-Hop.
Last but not least, you will need proper dance gear. This includes tights, leotards, warm-up clothes, a dance bag, and dance shoes. You can order quality dancewear at Just For Kix online, where you will find everything you need.
Of all of these items, shoes are probably the most important. Shoes for dancing are specifically made for the dance floor. You do not wear them off the dance floor. They should be of high-quality. They must fit properly. Your shoes must give you the proper control and traction and must move when you do. A shoe that sticks to the floor while a dancer is in motion can seriously injure the dancer.
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Written by: Wendy Dessler