Will Belly Dance Help Me Lose Weight?

Fun and appropriate exercise is good for everyone, and belly dance is an especially fun way to move your body. However, I would encourage you not to think about weight loss when you come to class.

Here’s why:

1) My goal is to teach you to dance, not to provide a workout. You will be moving for most of the time, you will work your muscles, and we usually break a sweat. But it’s more important to me that you build your dance vocabulary and musicality, learn to dance safely, and have fun.

2)  While some people lose weight when they increase their activity levels, not everybody does. Focusing on weight loss may cause you to miss out on all the other wonderful things belly dance has to offer: fun, friendship, confidence, personal expression, and the sheer joy of moving.

3) One of the wonderful things about belly dance is the way it celebrates body diversity. Belly dance looks completely different, but equally good, on each woman’s body. Part of learning to dance is discovering which movements look good and feel right on your body as it is now. Focusing on changing your body hinders that process.

4) I believe that belly dance class should be a safe environment for people of all sizes. So, while I do support personal choice around weight loss, I ask that you avoid “diet talk” and other forms of body judgment (including self-judgment!) during class and in the studio. We do live in a weight-obsessed society, so I understand that it’s hard not to bring those messages with us. But let’s all do our best to keep the class a body-positive oasis.

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