Shakira’s “hips don’t lie” and who would beg to differ? Belly dancing today is a craze, thanks to her efforts in reviving this ancient dance form and bringing it to the mainstream. Belly dancing originated from the Middle East and more specifically refers to Raqs Sharqi, which literally translates to ‘dance-oriental’ or oriental dance. The English term, belly dancing is actually an over-simplification of a much more complex art form that involves the movement of the entire body. While it is appealing to anyone who witnesses it, the belly dance is also a great technique to improve your mental and physical health. Now, if you are intrigued to this dance form, and would like to groove on it, read the paragraphs given below to know more about belly dancing moves.
Belly Dance Moves For Beginners
Like any exercise, belly dancing should start with simple warm ups. Since most moves in belly-dancing are a combination of simpler moves, an effective warm up should be range of simple moves that include moving the hips from side to side, moving them in a circle and moving the chest up and down.
The Hip Circle
This basic and most widely recognized move of belly dancing requires that you maintain an erect posture. First, you begin by moving your hip to the right, then to the front, then to the left and then to the back all the while keeping your torso erect.
The Figure Eight
To perform the figure eight, you have to combine two dance moves; moving the hips from side to side and twisting the hips. Executing each move individually is fairly easy but the tricky part is when you try to combine them. To do that, you must do one of each move separately starting with a twist, then a slide, then bringing the hip from the back to the front or from front to back depending on the position of the hip. And finally repeat the same with the other side. You will in essence circumscribe a figure eight or a mobius strip when you do this move. Remember, the upper body must be kept erect at all times.
The Chest Circle
Like the figure eight, the chest circle is a combination of two simple moves. But in the chest circle, it’s the lower body that remains stationary and erect instead. The move starts with a slide to the side, lifting of the chest, a slide to the opposite side while keeping the chest lifted and finally, relaxing the chest to normal portion.
An undulation may seem like a complex move at first but it’s actually quite simple. It starts by pulling the chest up in circle- forwards, up and back and then finishing it off with a relaxation of the back to normal position. Repeat this cycle several times.
The shimmy is a move that’s much like walking- except that you are staying at one place. In this move, you have to bend your knees alternatively like you’re exercising on a stationary bicycle and as a result your hips move up and down. The trick is to make the move as small and as fast as possible till it feels like your midriff is vibrating.
Winding down after a belly dance performance is probably more important than warming up. A typical wind-down should incorporate stretching the sides while maintaining an erect posture. Also, you can do all the simple moves by stretching each move to their limits but slowly. This way you will have performed a wind-down and will be ready to resume normally.
Performing each of the above moves separately can be quite boring and the creativity comes from combining several of these simpler moves to create more complex ones. To complete the experience it would be better if you could get yourself a typical middle-eastern belly-dance costume and some belly dance music for accompaniment. Only then, you will be ready to shake your hips like Shakira.