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Five Steps to Body Health

Five Steps to Body Health


  1. Dance to coordinate the entire body
  2. Walk, run, do yoga, or Tai Chi
  3. Get long and lean with Pilates reformer workouts
  4. Protect joints with exercises at
  5. Integrate your gains with CranioSacral therapy or massage therapy.


And the P.S. to those is: RESPOND immediately when you feel a twinge of pain.



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Entry Level Dancer



1.  Choose your dance form


2.  Select a studio or teacher that works for your location and schedule.


3.  Try out several styles if you can not decide.  Some studios have a monthly package to sample all the dance styles.


4.  Make the choices that will make dance more fun:

Who are the people you love to be around?

What is the dance music or type of movement that turns you on?

Do you want a group class or private instruction?

Are you drawn to the cutting edge, the local rage, formal dance training, improvisation, or folk and ethnic forms?

Do you want to dance with a partner, alone, or in unison with others?

Do you want to move a little or a lot, fast or slow?

Do you want direct instruction or an exercise format following an instructor?


5.  Choose your mentor, an instructor or leader who you feel comfortable learning from.


6.  Find a buddy who will encourage you and you can encourage.  Classes do not require a partner so you can bring someone with you or find a friend there.


7.  Watch television shows and movies to see how others have gone through the process of learning to dance.


8.  Encourage boys, brothers, sons, and husbands.

Bring your buddies or mates  along with you or practice with them at home.  Men and boys are finding the fun of dancing to music.  No excuses should keep them from improving their level of fun, coordination, communication, and build their brain while they are at it.

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Dancer is a unique athlete



Dance training builds a different approach to improving muscle efficiency and to coordinating all the muscles of the body in every movement.


Watching television’s Dancing with the Stars, it becomes obvious the detail of muscular control to perform Ballroom dancing.  Then the program, So You Think You Can Dance makes it even clearer the full range of muscular control and technique in many dance forms.  With dancing, walking, running and jumping become a completely new game from any other sport.


So in getting fit, the athlete can benefit from dance training as well as the dancer benefiting from athletic training.


Dancers use athletic training to enhance their strength and stamina and to improve eye hand coordination by using balls, swords, ribbons, and other equipment.


Dance also offers unique training to gain control of inner muscles that engage with every movement of the body.  Two significant results are first, greater manipulation of feet, legs, and arms with control from the inner muscles that dancers refer to as the “core,” and second, developing a balance of flexibility and strength for full range of the musculature and prevention of injury.


Here are only a few of the other benefits:


Engage small as well as large muscle groups.

Increase brain function with circular motion and crossing the mid-line of the body. Coordination of individual body parts acting separately and individually.

Develop balance and maneuverability from any position.

Develop a 360 degree awareness of the body in space.

Coordinate use of the breath with movement.

Coordinate use of the eyes with movement.

Connect moving the body to the emotions and to full commitment.

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Tim Finds Direction

Transformations with Ballroom, September 2005″Now you have direction.” Those words struck fear in my soul. Ginger and I looked at each other and laughed. Rudy walked to the sound system to make an adjustment. I stood there in shock while Ginger repeated the words, tantalizing me with the delight of this new information, “You now have direction.”

Why are those words so shocking? I did not say it out loud but my mind echoed loud enough for Ginger to hear, “I will avoid direction at all costs.” Oh my God, I will avoid taking a direction in my life and I will avoid taking direction from anyone as well. This sounds wacky to take a dance lesson so seriously, but I knew at that instant that I had come up against a real block to moving ahead in my life.

“Wow. You mean I can use the walls as a guide to keep me from wandering around the dance floor.”

“All you have to do is face forward for this part of the step and exactly 90 degrees to the left to take this step. You were stepping somewhere in between and confusing both of you because you did not know where you were.”

I listened. I did. But, but, but. My head was swimming. I was disoriented. “What is going on?” I asked myself over and over.

I gulped and began the step again. The resistance, my resistance was so tactile. My feet wobbled, barely finding the position on the floor facing this wall then that wall.

My mind was still echoing, “Now you have direction.” Oh no. What now. Direction? Does that mean…