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Hands up if you've ever gawked at the astoundingly alluring art of belly dancing and thought ''ooh, how exotic and captivating! Must try!''?
Gosh, what a coincidence. ME TOO, which is precisely why I skipped along to a 'Beginner's Guide To Belly Dancing' class last Friday night!
Wearing a Tool band t-shirt (which was pretty apt, because that's exactly what I felt like!) and a maxi skirt (the website advises that participants wear a long skirt or comfortable pants for the lesson), I headed off to Sydney's Dance Central to discover how difficult it could be, and boy, did I ever. Belly dancing is tricky! Much, much more complicated than it looks! Luckily, it's also much more entertaining than it seems, and it's a surprisingly good work-out.
Pardon my crappy phone photography (my actual camera had inconveniently ran out of batteries), and the absence of a full class. I would've LOVED to have taken a snapshot of everyone in motion, but, you know. Respecting people's privacy and all!
So, what's involved? Shimmying (swinging your hips from side to side rapidly without actually physically swinging your hips. See? Hard, huh?!), elegantly striding forwards on one foot and then stepping back while throwing your arms out, thrusting your pelvis out and then backwards, and many, many arm movements. Challenging and interesting!
The empty studio. The instructor looked at me as though I had several heads when I asked if I could take a photo of it (fair enough!) and told me that I'd have to ask the academy's management, but when I explained what I was trying to do, they kindly obliged!
At $17, it was a relatively inexpensive experience, and it was definitely an enjoyable one! I'd recommend attending a class and wearing something sliiightly sexy (for the first fifteen minutes I couldn't stop giggling at myself in the mirror. I think donning something a little more... I don't know... seductive?!... would've helped me to take everything more seriously!), and opting for a class on an afternoon or Friday evening if you're feeling nervous. I picked a 5.30PM session and there were only five other girls in the class!
Have YOU ever tried belly dancing? Would you ever try belly dancing?