With Mother’s Day rapidly approaching, people will turn out into the streets and turn out their wallets to find the perfect gift for the maternal unit. Anything from the obligatory phone call, bouquet of flowers, overpriced greeting cards, luxury spa days and crocheted scarves, will find their way into gift bags or shipped hundreds of miles to either ecstatic or very disappointed receipts depending on the relationship with the giver. Restaurants will be overflowing with revolving door reservations at swanky establishments that are “so expensive” that people will brag about it around the coffee machine the following day about how well they treated their mother. How about treating Mom to something interesting, new and good for her health such as belly dance lessons?
Belly dance is not only good cardio exercise, but it is easy on the joints while promoting muscular strength and flexibility. This dance has long been taught throughout the ages, handed down from mother to daughter in many cultures for strengthening and loosening the internal and external muscles of the hips, back and pelvic region in preparation for the birthing of future children and maintaining the pelvic floor. Because this dance is mainly practiced by women, there is camaraderie, wellbeing and fostering of positive self-image that comes from sharing this ancient dance with like-minded women.
Here are a few places in Atlanta to find classes all year long:
Pera Dance Studio offers a drop-in rate of just $12 for those timid mothers who want to first test out the waters. For the mothers who are willing to jump in, Pera offers 4 classes for only $40, or unlimited monthly classes at $120. If belly dance is just not Mom’s thing, Pera has Zumba, Salsa, Tango and Hip Hop classes in addition to the many forms of belly dance instruction.
Atlanta Fusion Belly Dance offers a 6 week class for $60 with a discounted $50 pre-registration. AFBD has classes ranging from beginner to advanced in belly dance as well as Zumba, Persian, Bellycardio, Hula and Polynesian. Gift certificates are available as well as Groupons.
Nazeem Allayl offers 5 week classes for $60 and has three locations in the Atlanta area: Little 5 Points Studio, Northern Perimeter Studio and Marietta-Windy Hill Studio. In addition to Nazeem Allayl’s professional Belly Dance curriculum, the studio has a variety of belly dance workout classes for every activity level as well as Indian Bollywood, Bhangra and Polynesian classes.
Belly Dance by Samora teaches all courses from Several Dancers Core Studio located in Decatur. Samora’s female only participant classes are 6-week long courses offered at a discounted $60 for pre-registered classes. Samora teaches beginner through advanced classes as well as props, Bellycardio and her Mommy and Me Class, which is perfect for the busy Mom wanting share time with her young daughter.
Street Studio Dance and Fitness is an all-encompassing dance studio offering classes in Belly Dance, Zumba, Yoga, Latin Fusion, Hip Hop and many other forms of dance. Street Studio offers a variety of monthly payment options from $12 drop-in rates to $110 class packages. There is even Pole Dancing classes available for your frisky and not-so-average Mom.
Wherever you reside, there are sure to be studios offering Belly Dance classes and gift certificates. This once niche market dance has grown in popularity and has been adopted in many countries and cultures as a form of entertainment and exercise. Because Belly Dance is so easy on the body it can be practiced well into advanced age making it ideal for all age groups. For fun add a coin-skirt, balancing sword, Saidi cane or even candles to the ole goodie bag. Who doesn’t like to play with fire and sharp objects?
No matter what type of Mom you have, this Mother’s Day she is sure to appreciate the gift of this ancient and culturally rich dance-or she will return the favor with socks at Christmas.