Today I’ve been chatting to the delightful Charni over at Belly Dance Lessons Online. She is the queen of belly dancing and also a lovely Aussie lady. I’m a huge fan of hers. For years I’ve wanted to learn to belly dance. I even signed up to a class once but when I arrived the teacher didn’t show up. I never did find out why though so I hope she was okay! Unfortunately I never booked another class. My love of belly dancing probably started when my dad and stepmother took me along to a Turkish restaurant that had a belly dancer. Even though the belly dancer had some wobbly parts to her belly I thought she was beautiful. As Charni says “we celebrate the wobbly bits, we wiggle and jiggle and giggle. We can see that a curvy dancer looks beautiful, we see that women of all shapes and sizes and ages attend the class, and it is not the size that determines how well we belly dance.”
This is where belly dance and more creative or expressive movement can help with body confidence, memory and gaining that feel good factor. The aim of these classes is to help us feel better about the shape we are TODAY, not how we may look tomorrow.
There was a recent study done on women with fibromyalgia which is often linked with depression. Half of the study group made up the control group, and the other half did belly dance twice a week for 16 weeks. The overwhelming result was in favour of the belly dance group who showed significant improvements not only with managing the physical pain, but also with mental health and coping with the syndrome in general. They concluded that “belly dance can be used in the treatment of fibromyalgia to reduce pain and improve functional capacity, quality of life and self-image.” While this study is directly related to fibromyalgia it is logical the effects can be applied to those not suffering from fibromyalgia too.
The sensuous (remember sensual is not necessarily sexual) movement and sparkly outfits of belly dance really grab me. This is probably due to my childhood desire to dress like Jeannie from the TV show “I dream of Jeannie”. Oh to be able to live in those purple pantaloons and grant ones own desires, and my loved ones, with the nod of the head (I’d omit calling my husband my master though)! To top that off she lives in the coolest little budoir. Yes I dream of (being) Jeannie.
If belly dancing strikes a chord with you or you just love the thought of dressing up like a Persian goddess then try this out with me. If you’d like to celebrate your wobbly bits or enhance the love of your non-wobbly bits you can sign up for Charni’s Belly Dance Lessons online here. Click the link and try her free elessons. I did them at home an am now signing up for her monthly courses. You get weekly classes you can do in your own time at home, you get a beautiful hip scarf and you get one on one support from the gorgeous Charni. Let’s get Shimmy-ing 🙂
Do you dance? Do you dream of being Jeannie? Leave me a comment letting me know how you feel about belly dance.