How to Lose Weight With Belly Dancing

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Practice Routines for Belly Dancing....5

Belly dancing is a beautiful art form, but it can also help you lose weight as well. Get trim while shaking your belly with help from a professional belly dancer in this free video.

Part of the Video Series: Belly Dancing
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Video Transcript

Hi, my name is Linda, and I'm here today at Essy's Rug Gallery in Franklin, Tennessee, to talk to you about how to lose weight with belly dancing. One of the great things about belly dance is that it's so much fun that it usually doesn't even feel like an exercise. Before you know it, you've gotten a great workout, and all you did was have fun and dance around with some friends. So, we're going to talk a little bit more though about ways to really enhance your belly dancing to make it a better workout for you. One thing that you can do is make sure that you practice in between classes. Not only is that practice going to make you better at the movements, but every time you get better at a movement, you're actually going to get a better workout from it. Your muscles are going to work harder, and you're going to end up being a lot more toned by using those belly dance movements more and more often. Other things to consider if you're trying to lose weight are, of course, to watch your calorie intake. There is no amount of belly dancing that is going to undo donuts and pizza every day of the week, so there's just no option there. You're going to have to take care of yourself with your food, but one great thing about belly dance is that it really supports you in feeling good about yourself, and that's usually going to lead to making better decisions about your eating anyway. Another thing you can do is really work on keeping your heart rate up while you're belly dancing. We have some movements that are very relaxing and almost kind of Zen, and like that, but if you do want to make it more of a calorie burning workout rather than just a relaxation exercise, then you want to think of just a few things that I'll talk about right now. One of those is to keep your arms over your head. Any time your arms are above your heart, your heart has to pump a little bit harder to get the blood working up there. So, any time you've got a movement going, say in your hips or with your chest, if you're doing a hip shimmy or if you're just doing a few basic walking movements, keeping your arms up over the head and preferably using them in a really pretty way is going to make your heart rate stay up a little bit longer. Also, of course, if you feel like you're getting a little too much of a workout, you can always take your arms and keep them a little bit lower in order to balance out the kind of effort you're giving out during the practice. Other things you can do to make sure you're getting a really great workout with your belly dancing, are to make sure that you're engaging your core muscles. There are wonderful wonderful layers of muscles all through your abdominal area and one of the muscles that is usually forgotten but is very very important is what we call the transverse abdominis, that's a really big word for muscle that runs across you, and it goes around you in this fashion, right like this. So, what you want to do in your belly dancing is make sure that you're drawing the belly button in towards your spine. Immediately when you do that, you're engaging a lot more blood flow going through the middle of the body. When you add that onto doing some faster movements and making sure you're repeating things enough times to really feel the burn in the muscle and with your arms overhead, there's no way you can walk away from it without a good workout. So, engage your core muscles, keep your arms over your head, and make sure that you keep going until you really feel those muscles working and you know that you're doing the movement correctly. And that's how to get a great workout with your belly dancing. My name is Linda. My website is Lindabellydance.com. Please visit it if you have any questions about belly dancing. I'm here at Essy's Rug Gallery, and we're going to get to dancing. See you later.

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