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Do You Stretch Before Your Dance Classes?

January 31, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 142

In this article I want to expand on why stretching is an essential warm up for your dancing.

Here is a common scenario:

It's three hours before dance class and as usual, you're sitting in front of your computer, facebooking.Your body is relaxed and this is what it's thinking: "OMG! This is so relaxing, I'm never getting up."

Then it's time to go to dance class. You promptly close the browser, tell everyone on your status that you're going to class, grab your bag and get out the door (not in sequence of course). You get to class, put on your shoes and all of a sudden you are required to exert yourself. You have to point your feet, use your hips and stand up straight! Imagine what your body has to say to this dramatic shift.

Your body: " Whhhaaatttt? You got to be kidding me! I'm going to twist my ankle now. Like. Right. Now."

Your body is not ready for all this physical activity. Your body feels abused. It was just sitting down and all of a sudden it has to do ALL this stuff". The last thing it wants is another injury.

The Solution: You need to PREPARE your body for dancing by stretching before the class. Dancing requires as much physical exertion as any other sport. Would you run a marathon without stretching?

Once you stretch, not only are you going to avoid injuries, but you will also be able to push yourself to the maximum. Another great side benefit to stretching is that it will inspire you mentally for dancing.

So do yourself (and me) a favor and whip out a mat 30 min to an hour before your class, and do some exercises. Your body will thank you and say something like; "I'm ready to give it my all!"

For Latin and Ballroom dancing I recommend that you concentrate on the following body parts:

1. Neck area. 2. Arms/shoulders 3. Hip flexors 4. Hamstrings 5. Ankles

If stretching is Greek to you (and you're not Greek), check out stretching videos on YouTube. I found many with some excellent beginner exercises:

Personally, I love and do yoga almost everyday. There are tons of studios available and you can even take yoga classes online! I find that it really helps loosen up the body and I strongly recommend it.

How do you stretch? Or do you at all?

By: Leonid Turetsky --Professional Latin & Ballroom Dance Instructor--

Learn to dance online with our videos:Learn to dance For dance lessons in Boston area:Ballroom dance Boston

Source: EzineArticles
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