Oriental Dance or Belly dance


Picture from my students at Hafla intensive in Helsinki. Photo by: Matti Sten

Belly dance, also referred to as Arabic dance (رقص شرقي‎,Raqs sharqi, literally: “oriental dancing”), is an Arabic expressive dance which originated in Egypt and that emphasizes complex movements of the torso.It has evolved to take many different forms depending on the country and region, both in costume and dance style, for example: Turkish, Lebanese, Andalusian, American Cabaret, American tribal, American Tribal Fusion… to name a few.
Even if the styles are different, the basic moves are  really similar.   The most common part in any of these styles is the isolations and complex movements of the torso, like for example: Chest lifts, drops, circles. Belly undulations, flutters, tucks.  Hip circles, shimmies, lifts and drops.  There is also many arms movements, turns, travelling steps and foot patterns. This dance style is a combination of soft and big , sharp and precise, giving a femenine and powerful touch to it. The use of props like: a variety of veils, swords and daggers, canes, zills, candles…etc it´s also really common. This style have a wide range of infinity possibilities that promise you and entire lifetime of learning material.
Belly dance is not only a mesmerizing art form, but also comes with endless health benefits for the body and the soul. Let´s start with the obvious one first and that is the physical part of you getting healthy moving going on,  but  the list does not end there.  Your flexibility also improves and so does  your balance as well as you get a stronger core. That is also linked on alleviating back pain. Cool! right?
Lets get going to the psychological advantages. This beautiful dance form has also evidence on  improving self image, raising self esteem what derives on gaining  in confidence. It´s been also studied that this dance form can be used as a therapy, helping women with traumas such as rape victims or cancer victims.
Last but not least. Dance in general is also the best tool to work your brain. It is studied, that dance is the only sport that builds new neural paths ways. Also improves your  balance and coordination. People who dance regularly have an 85% less possibilities to get any kind of brain degenerative diseases  such as dementia or alzheimer. Dance also make you feel good. There have been studies done and proven that people who dance regularly are much happier than those who don´t. So. What you are waiting for?
                                              Latin Dances

picture from my students rehearsaling for the spring show

As this style is normally associated with the ballroom competition style. I refer this name, for what it means. The social dances from Latin-America. Now, what is exactly the difference between social dance and competition dances? The first one have a more relaxed overview. Dances by the people created for the people so that everyone can jump in and enjoy them. The ones that are danced in every birthday party, weekend disco and national celebrations with a fairly good band playing live music on the town square. The steps are also more simple and easy enough so that everyone can follow along. Meanwhile the competition ballroom style is more in to that over stretched, complex foot patterns and turns and i could say, over the top style.(notice: i have nothing against that though. I think all dance styles are beautiful)

Which styles do i teach? Merengue, Salsa(casino), Bachata(classic), Chachachá, Reggeatón and Kizomba*(!!!Note:!!! Kizomba is a dance form from Angola/Africa, so it´s not a Latin dance. However, i have noticed that in Latin parties, they would often also play some Kizomba songs)

What you will learn on my  lessons?You will learn the origins of each dance style, the different rythms of each, how to count them and how to difference one from another, also the basic steps that are performed in couples for each dance, some solo steps and embelishments.

So does that mean i need a couple?No, you don´t. We perform all the steps solo. Even the couple steps. So you don´t need to be afraid to be paired with anyone.

Do i need to have previous dance experience?No, you don´t. Everyone is free to join any of my basic dance lessons without previous experience in the field.





Barre is a relatively new fitness trend based on ballet and Pilates principles. It involves
the equipment used in ballet, namely the ballet barre, and some additional equipment
commonly used in Pilates and other fitness workouts such as hand weights, tubing and
exercise balls. Barre has been mainstream for approximately 20 years, however it has
only recently gained momentum in the fitness industry.
Barre is the generic term for the exercise form that is based on ballet technique and
movement. Around the world, barre has taken on many different meanings and often
incorporates elements of Pilates and yoga.
The small isometric movements are unique to this style of exercise and are accessible for all fitness levels. When properly taught, students focus on safety and overall body awareness.
The discipline of dance is translated into barre by focusing on proper posture and form. Barre is not associated with the use of heavy weights
, high intensity impact, or cardio exercises. Barre is not limited to one specific
brand or studio. The exercise form has been a grassroots development through dancers and fitness experts from around the world. There is no singular source of origin for these exercises as it is considered a fusion of different types of movement.
In its classic sense, barre workouts are comprised of the basic positions and exercises
found in ballet training. The goal of the workout is to provide individuals with a total body workout that fuses the strength, conditioning, and flexibility of dancers with the repetition, muscle loading and structure of a traditional
fitness class.
Barre incorporates aspects of various teaching modalities. A majority of people who are drawn to barre workouts have a dance background or danced as a child. While there are terms that are specific to ballet, barre is not just for students from a dance background.
Barre is a safe way to cater to a large range of individuals with a large range of potential
injuries. Barre is typically targeted toward women. However, more men are becoming
interested in the trend because of its use as a great cross-training workout and the focus on stretching throughout the workout.
If you still unsure of anything, have any doubts or questions, don´t Hesitate on contacting me. 🙂
Have a nice day!  Thank you for stopping by.
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