Are you free to dance? A silly question at first glance. Of course you are! But, can you actually do it? Free dancing that is! It’s a lot harder than many think.
I stumbled onto a video featuring Shiva Rea last night. In it she explains the history of free dance and it’s suppression (mainly by religion and ‘civilised’ society) for the last 2000 years. Since the 1950′s and Elvis’ hip movements we have been rediscovering this instinctive movement form, yet many are still held prisoners by their minds inability to just let go and move…. Without thinking and without rules.
It sounds so simple: just move! Don’t think but listen to the music and dance. Yet I believe many even in my direct surrounding would struggle. Those who don’t do goofy behaviour and are introvert, even when alone or at home. I know a very polite, quiet pre-teen, who – unlike many children – doesn’t seem to have that free spirit of play and abandon. In fact I’ve never seen her display any such behaviour over the years. This is partly her character and partly her upbringing. She is an only child and spends almost every weekend with her grand parents, who are in their seventies. After watching the YouTube video mentioned above I realised she would probably struggle. Yet it would do her a world of good to ‘free’ dance. It’s a bit like yoga, funny enough. Those how say they are too stiff or not bendy enough for yoga would benefit more!
I own Shiva Rea’s Trance Dance DVD, which has yoga and free dance sessions on it. It’s great fun to play. On my first go I did struggle a little bit with the dance section. The brain does tell you that you look extremely silly. Similar to what it tells you when you first start meditating. However, afterwards I felt happy, fit and fulfilled. It lasted several days. Not bad for 15 minutes of fun and dancing freely. Perhaps this also explains the success of the Zumba movement. After all it is something we’ve been doing for millennia! And it’s slowly coming back.