Would You Call Yourself A Dancer?
Hint- You already are 😉
Graceful, disciplined, stick-thin, able to bend in half, do triple turns, and stand on toes —- these are some of the images that comes to mind when hearing the word “dancer” .
By this definition, would many of us actually call ourselves dancers at all?!
When I was young I LOVED to dance. As I grew older and started comparing myself to others I felt I had no right to call myself a DANCER. I wasn’t good enough, dedicated enough, or professional enough. When I lived in NYC as a young adult surrounded by performing artists, I didn’t feel confident enough to tell anyone I even liked dancing! Those dancing days were behind me… well except for hitting the dancefloor at the club after a few drinks 😜
My first time joining a Zumba class proved me wrong and reconnected me to joyful movement!
These days, when I tell people I currently work as a Zumba and dance fitness instructor, I’m used to certain reactions— a look of fear that I’m judging someone’s level of fitness or activity, enthusiasm to share one’s own stories of childhood dance classes, or apprehension that I’m going to pressure them into joining a dance fitness class.
Dance, after all, brings up many feelings and memories. It’s used to mark special occasions like wedding celebrations, high school graduations and kindergarten Christmas plays. It can remind us of some of our own greatest moments or also of times we felt most awkward, vulnerable, or uncomfortable. From the moment toddlers start to kick and bounce along with the beat of nursery rhymes to the retirees you see line-dancing in the park, dance is very much a part of the experience of being alive !
So when I see those scared looks that I’ll force someone to dance or when I hear someone put down their skills on the dance floor, what I want to say is: I understand ! AND, likely there is a dancer inside of you already. She’s been there all along.
Loving dance and feeling free enough to move with confidence is not something reserved for professional dancers alone. It’s something ANYONE can access. Yes, it takes practice, it takes a bit of bravery to join your first class, it takes a sense of humor to stop taking yourself and your missteps so seriously.
If you feel like there’s a dancer inside of you, let her out ✨💕 If you know someone who could benefit from adding joyful movement back into her life, share this with her too!