Have you ever wondered where Belly Dancing originated?
About Belly Dancing
Belly dance can be traced to the Middle East, the Mediterranean and Africa.
In the Arabic language the term belly dancing is Raqs Sharqi and in Turkish Oryantal Dansi can be roughly translated to mean “exotic oriental dance” the Arabic term Raqs Sharqi .
The term belly dance was given by the western world. When people travelled and saw this ancient art form they thought that the women danced from the belly only thus the term belly dancing was given, but if you learn the dance you will see that you use every part of the body in a controlled manner, isolating all the moves.
Some dancers have discredited this art form by making it cheap for tourism but if you really train you have to learn about the culture, the rhythms, the costumes, what style belongs to which piece of music but that’s only if you wish to become a serious dancer. If you simply wish to dance for fun go for it because it truely is!!
There are many styles out there from American Tribal, Turkish, etc.
The style Yvonne teaches is Raqs Sharqi which means eastern dance.
This dance is a social grace found within the Egyptian home, danced by women at parties and celebrations while the men are segregated into another room.
Raqs Sharqi uses every muscle in the body the dancer learns to change from move to move with an elegant fluidity to the music’s rhythm.
The dancer can express their emotions evoked by the music.
Many see belly dance as a women’s dance celebrating the sensuality of being a mature woman.
The styles within Raqs Sharqi you will learn is Saidi Baladi Sharqi Sha’abi
Male Belly Dancing
Years ago in ottoman times it was only the men that entertained and danced, as women were not allowed to dance in public.
Today men do dance within the family, at celebrations etc; there are also many male professional performers like Titto who you may be lucky to see in Sharm El Shiekh if you have a chance ask your Hotel to find out if he is performing at fantasy land or in Arabic Alf Layla Wa Layla , there is also Shafeek Abrahim who is based in London originally from Cairo aswell as Ozgen from Turkey.
The dance is uniquely designed for the female body working on the abdominal muscles, hip moves, chest moves it is firm and earthy, traditionally with bare feet connected to the ground. The dance is characterized by smooth, flowing, complex and sensual movements of the torso.
Raqs sharqi despite its western name belly dancing uses every muscle group of the body it is fundamentally a solo improvisational dance with its own unique dance vocabulary that is fluidity intergrated with the music’s rhythms.
Health and Fitness
The health benefits for this type of dance is extremely beneficial. As well as losening the joints you will strengthen the back muscles. If you do have problems the lower muscles will develop and support injured areas. Pelvic floor muscles will also strengthen.
The dance teaches you to relax your muscles reducing tension, in turn gives you a fantastic feeling of wellbeing, increased femininity and empowerment.
The dance has been known to: