As a ballroom dancer, this time of quarantine can be difficult to maneuver through. As a people person, my joy comes from spreading joy and unlimited benefits that dancing brings. It’s my job but it can fulfill a part of my person. Part of that fulfillment is the requirement to physically be able to help them feel what dancing is like. At Arthur Murray, we are trained in multiple ways to teach people the skill of dance - by using our words, using visual cues, and physically moving a person.
Being quarantined means it is really difficult for me to share the joy of dancing, to give someone that personal touch they need, to add to someone’s social life, or to just add fun to someone’s day. Or can I? Although I can’t physically teach dance at the moment. I can give tools that I have found can not only help with dancing but can help with finding hope, peace, and connection with those around us during this time of mandatory isolation. And I found the perfect way to get started.
LEARNING TO BE WITH NATURE
Since the beginning of quarantine, I’ve done one thing consistently: take a walk outside each day. Daily walks help me to center myself, think through my situation logically and calmly, and get exercise. In short, go for a walk - observing the current social distancing guidelines, of course. You can listen to your iPod, take your phone, it doesn’t matter. Just take a walk. Get outside. Breathe fresh air. Smile at those you walk by. Just go for a walk.
As a dance teacher though, that’s just not enough. Since we can’t dance together and online sessions - group or private - are limited, we need to find other ways to work on our dancing and techniques. Part Two is to look up when you walk. When you go outside, look around you and in front of you (not at your feet). When you breathe the fresh air, lift your head up to really smell Spring around you. When you smile at those you walk past, project it. Elongate your neck and be genuine with your smile. You may not know them but let me tell you how amazing it is to get a smile back - and sometimes a wave if they are across the street! It’s really such a cool thing and it makes this world feel smaller when you can connect in this simple way to your neighbors.
What am I really asking you to do? Work on your POSTURE! As you may or may not know, having great posture is paramount for a dancer. Whether you are just learning for fun, for competition or a little of both, your posture can and will dictate much of what type of dancer you become - and having bad posture can shorten the time you can enjoy dancing because it wreaks havoc on your muscles and joints.
There is so much we can do to improve our health just by walking - and during this time, we need ways to connect without touching and get fresh air in our lungs to quiet the isolation we may start to feel. Later on, we’ll move to other activities. But for now, it’s important we appreciate and find the worth in a simple thing like taking a walk outside.
Enjoy your walk today, and don’t hesitate to share how it made you feel.