Learn Some New Moves: Celebrate National Dance Day

The 2nd annual National Dance Day is being celebrated this Saturday, July 30.

National Dance Day is a grassroots initiative that encourages the nation – young and old – to move! Individuals, families, organizations and communities from across the nation come together and share their creative expression by dancing. Any style of dance is welcomed, and imagination is recommended in order to get the most out of this celebratory day.

National Dance Day is one way to generate national awareness that dancing is a medium of artistic expression and storytelling. Through shows like - So You Think You Can Dance - dancing has proven its value in bringing people from all walks of life together through a positive platform that has no boundaries. Most importantly, the day is intended to promote health and wellness nationwide, but dancing also cultivates imagination and passion.

Dance for Health

I say that the more fun exercise can be, the better. Dance is my favorite way to exercise and it is fun, too. With our nation battling obesity and weight issues, which ultimately leads to other health problems – exercise is imperative to build a healthier lifestyle.

This year there are three different levels of dances that you can learn to celebrate National Dance Day. Last year there was only one dance and I appreciate the variety this year, so that all ages and people with different levels of dance expertise can participate. National Dance Day will be celebrated throughout the country at various Six Flags theme parks, but even if you don’t have one close to you, you can celebrate it in your own way.

Let’s start by learning the dance of your choice:

  1. “Everybody Dance” level which is for beginners, is salsa taught by Mary Murphy here.
  2. “Intermediate Intensive” level is a sassy number taught by Robin Antin, who is the creator of the Pussycat Dolls. Learn here.
  3. “Master Class” level is a hip hop dance taught by married powerhouse choreographers Napoleon and Tabitha D’Umo here.

Dancing with the Kids

Dance is a great way to get children moving. I am a lover of dance as many of you know. I have been dancing since I was 3 years old and haven’t stopped yet. With that being said, I recently had the opportunity to work with the children of YMCA Camp Phoenix to teach them a flash mob type dance that they performed for their families at an Open House.

Watching them dance and have fun is so motivating. So go on: get out there and learn some of the National Dance Day dances with your family or get inspired by the campaign: “Let’s Move” with Beyonce and Michelle Obama, and get a great workout at the same time.

Michigan is for Dancers

If you are looking for a great dance workout, try a Zumba class, a Jazzercise class, some ballroom dance lessons or look for a class at your local dance studio. There are a couple of events that some of my Michigan dance friends coordinate that you do not want to miss.

Bi-annually there is Motor City Movement: A Collaboration of Choreographers, and it usually occurs in July and December every year. This event not only embraces the love of dance, but also the artistry that the choreographer brings to the vision of the dance. If you love tap, you can’t forget about the upcoming Motor City Tap Fest, which is occurring from August 18-21, 2011. The musicality and genius of a tap dancer is celebrated here in Michigan. You don’t want to miss any of these events.

What is your favorite type of dance to do or watch? There is so much about dance to love, so  turn on your favorite song and start bopping to the beat. Your body, mind and soul will thank you for it.

Photo Credit: mikebaird

About Grace Derocha

Grace Derocha is a registered dietitian, certified diabetes educator, and certified health coach. She loves helping others learn how to live a healthier and happier lifestyle. Grace was born and raised in Michigan. She is a wife, mommy, Spartan, and avid Detroit sports fan. She loves food, music, dancing, shopping, reading, and smiling.
 
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