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  1. #1
    Master BHUZzer sabrinabellydancer's Avatar
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    April Cross Training Thread

    ok, so we are 4 months in to the cross training challenge. how's it going? what kind of progress have you made?

    i've spent the last month training in modern dance classes 2x week. the classes have absolutely improved my balance, strengthened my legs and given me a new level of control re: changing intensities of energy delivery during a performance. the floor work was dramatically different from what we bd-ers are used to! its also refreshed the "learning choreography" part of my brain.

    what about you? improvements? new knowledge? try some new physical activity that impacts your belly dance?
    Last edited by sabrinabellydancer; 04-06-2010 at 02:58 AM.


  2. #2
    Master BHUZzer shems's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    One of my friends talked me into taking aerial dance classes. They are so fun, difficult and incredibly strengthening. I've also been enjoying a contemporary dance class that is also very challenging and humbling. Both are reminding me that I need to build my flexibility. It is amazing how tight a belly dancers hips can get!


  3. #3
    Advanced BHUZzer _Tanya_'s Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Doing ballet at least twice a month and to add stamina I've decided to do the Couch to 5K program to get me up and running.


  4. #4
    Mega BHUZzer anyadance's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    I've been doing Aerial arts since December last year. I've never seen so much muscle on my body in my life! I mainly train on the trapeze, ropes, and silks but have also done hoop and flying ladder.


  5. #5
    Mega BHUZzer Lara L's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Aerial?!?
    man, I am so jealous! the pitfalls of living in a small remote town, I guess...
    I'm working with a balance/therapy ball to work on core strength at the moment. I've got the brute strength, but have discovered all the little tiny things that are challenged working with the therapy ball for balance.


  6. #6
    Master BHUZzer aziyade's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Lara L View Post
    Aerial?!?
    man, I am so jealous! the pitfalls of living in a small remote town, I guess...
    SERIOUSLY! I can't even get an adult gymnastics class here because of the insurance risk. Bleah.

    I actually took up hula hooping. Don't laugh -- it's more cardio than it looks. And it's FUN! It's a fun way to combine all that hophop/funk/drilling stuff into something with no expectations for performance or mastery :) Just fun.


  7. #7
    Fotia
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    I had to stop bellydancing about three weeks ago because of a neck injury but I can still dance from the waist down. So I have been spending more time on learning more Greek dancing. I have also spent more time on the recumbent bike which has really strengthened my legs. I'll be glad when I can bellydance again though but in the meantime this hiatus does give me a chance to work on other things that I never get time to do.


  8. #8
    Ultimate BHUZzer ZanaRaqs's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    omg aerial sounds so awesome! off to see if they local classes :)


  9. #9
    Advanced BHUZzer MaryRaks's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Aerial classes are so on my bucket list! must move somewhere w/ enough awesome factor to offer this

    I had to stop modern because it was right after one of my school classes and I often wouldn't make it on time to do more than maybe 10 minutes. I'm still taking ballet though and it's helping me remain more aware of my body lines, which is good b/c I felt I was falling into some bad habits.

    I do need to rebuild some muscle though and I found an outdoor circuit plan on health.com so I'm going to give that a go since my schedule changed and spin class is now at an inconvenient time for me.


  10. #10
    Master BHUZzer shems's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by anyadance View Post
    I've been doing Aerial arts since December last year. I've never seen so much muscle on my body in my life! I mainly train on the trapeze, ropes, and silks but have also done hoop and flying ladder.
    Tell me about it, I'm just a brand spankin' new beginner and my muscles are already magically appearing. So far I'm just learning to climb the silks and I still need help getting up into the hammock or the hoop, but it is fun doing some of the maneuvers once I'm up there. I never knew my hands were so weak! My grip gives out even before my arms do half the time. It is great fun!


  11. #11
    Advanced BHUZzer Marianna's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    I would love to take ballet classes, I think I would get the most of that dance form. I just have to find the time so I can commit to it for at least a few months.

    I've been ice skating, and it's been a lot of fun. I only went a few times so far (but I am hooked) so it hasn't made any difference yet.
    I think in the long run it would further improve balance and posture. It really wasn't hard the first time because I already had good posture and balance from dancing (that's what my 'trainer' said). It's also really nice exercise for everything from the waist down.

    I took hoop classes for a couple of months but I had to stop because:
    - I mainly wanted to take it for loosing weight / toning
    - improve coordination, etc.
    This would be accomplished but we spent a lot of time doing things with arms and hands, which are great if you want to perform or even just look good hooping, but I didn't really care for that and I got hurt. My right wrist still hurts and this was back in November. I was told some bruises are normal, but this strain really bothered me. This wasn't an injury, it was just a "normal" side effect.

    But what I liked about hooping the most was that it can make you more balanced out; I am very one sided, as in having a stronger / preferred side of doing things, as we all do, but I think I may be worse than most due to laziness :( Hooping can fix that.


  12. #12
    Fotia
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    This thread is really inspiring because I was so tempted to rest on my laurels and then I see all that is going on here and it all sounds so attractive that I have to keep moving!


  13. #13
    Advanced BHUZzer yameyameyame's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    I started taking ballet lessons in December. Even though it's just once a week, I am already seeing some improvement in my posture and spins, my legs feel and look a little bit stronger, I can do a lot more belly dancing on demi-pointe and travel much better.

    I've had foot problems all my life. When I started belly dancing, I felt like I needed to use my feet as little as possible so that they wouldn't hamper my dancing. Now I am starting to feel like I can include them more and more, that one day I will be able to dance with my whole body and not just my hips.


  14. #14
    Ultimate BHUZzer ZanaRaqs's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    i found a place for aerial arts close by and plan to go after our recital next week (things are hectic until then). yay! so excited, it sounds so fun!


  15. #15
    Master BHUZzer sabrinabellydancer's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Fotia View Post
    I had to stop bellydancing about three weeks ago because of a neck injury but I can still dance from the waist down.
    boo! i had no idea you were so seriously injured. can you get to an acupuncturist?

    Quote Originally Posted by MaryRaks View Post
    Aerial classes are so on my bucket list!
    me too!!!!! it sounds like so much fun, like the closest humans can come to flying and dancing simultaneously. do any of you ladies have video of your aerial work? what kinds of "moves" can you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by yameyameyame View Post
    I started taking ballet lessons in December.
    that's great! ballet makes very strong feet. did your teacher give you good stretches and strengthening exercises? like the towel and theraband ones? those help a lot

    Quote Originally Posted by Marianna View Post
    I would love to take ballet classes, I think I would get the most of that dance form. I just have to find the time so I can commit to it for at least a few months.

    I've been ice skating, and it's been a lot of fun.

    I took hoop classes for a couple of months
    i'm so impressed. how do you find the time to do all this and get straight a's in school and raise your beautiful daughter? since you have magic time management, you can probably fit ballet in. does continuing ed offer any ballet?


  16. #16
    I could get used to this! omchantress's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by shems View Post
    One of my friends talked me into taking aerial dance classes. They are so fun, difficult and incredibly strengthening. I've also been enjoying a contemporary dance class that is also very challenging and humbling. Both are reminding me that I need to build my flexibility. It is amazing how tight a belly dancers hips can get!
    Shems, where are you taking you aerial dance classes? I just took the first of three partner balancing acrobatics workshops at the Creative Alliance last night. SO FUN!!! I'd kind of like to try aerial too but I'm nervous because I'm afraid of heights!


  17. #17
    Master BHUZzer shems's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by omchantress View Post
    Shems, where are you taking you aerial dance classes? I just took the first of three partner balancing acrobatics workshops at the Creative Alliance last night. SO FUN!!! I'd kind of like to try aerial too but I'm nervous because I'm afraid of heights!
    woo! that sounds great. I have to pay more attention to what is happening down there. So far in aerial I haven't made it more than 10 feet off the ground...give me time. :-) I can give you the name and email of my teacher if you want.


  18. #18
    Mega BHUZzer indigostars's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    I've been taking Bharatanatyam regularly again. I'm not sure if it's improving my belly dance, but I'm becoming stronger and more coordinated.

    I occasionally do drop in ballet. I like it, but I don't love it.


  19. #19
    Master BHUZzer sabrinabellydancer's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    indigo stars: bharatanatyam is awesome! does your teacher explain history, culture etc?

    ok, my first drawback from modern classes. left class today with a huge bruise on my right knee and a "floor burn" on my right foot from the marley floor during a jump turn into floor work section. def wearing ballet shoes and a left side slit costume to work tonight! so, i guess costuming around the bumps and bruises is starting to come into play. but, the strength and control we learn in class is soooooo worth it.

    been watching aerial videos and am now obsessed with becoming strong enough to try those classes too. thanks ladies ;P lol


  20. #20
    Advanced BHUZzer gisela's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Nothing impressive going on here but I am still quite proud that have begun going to the gym again, mainly for drop in classes. So far I've taken some yoga classes, belly/back strength and "dance-fit". Trying Zumba on monday. I was in pretty bad shape so I already feel more agile and strong. (which will def help with my dancing)


  21. #21
    Official BHUZzer Shara_Raqs's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Fotia View Post
    I had to stop bellydancing about three weeks ago because of a neck injury but I can still dance from the waist down. So I have been spending more time on learning more Greek dancing. I have also spent more time on the recumbent bike which has really strengthened my legs. I'll be glad when I can bellydance again though but in the meantime this hiatus does give me a chance to work on other things that I never get time to do.
    OH MY! Sorry to hear about your injury. But it's great that you are still active...SPEEDY RECOVERY so you'll be back to bellydancing in no time :)


  22. #22
    Advanced BHUZzer Marianna's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Sabrina, you're sweet :) It's hard to find the time nowadays. I want to find a ballet class where I would feel comfortable, with my age group and abilities... it might take a while. But now I really want to learn ice skating, meaning not just the stuff I can do now, but learn spins and jumps. I think that would definitely improve my dancing. :)
    And actually ice skating classes are not even that expensive, they're $11 / class in some places (prepaid for 1 session, which is 8 classes). Private classes are the ones that cost $$.


  23. #23
    Advanced BHUZzer rassicahl's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    I dusted off my rollerblades after a long, cold winter and hit the streets. It's a great lower body workout, hips to ankles along with cardio. And it works your inner thighs which is such a hard part to tone.


  24. #24
    Advanced BHUZzer Marianna's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    I really wanted to start rollerblading with my daughter because
    - once you buy the blades and accessories it's free, you can go anywhere
    - it would be fun to do on the beach - San Diego has really cool beaches with park like settings and long sidewalks
    - it's an excellent lower body workout
    - it's great for overall cardio, a little more intense than walking, but less demanding than running (and easier on the knees / ankles

    But here's the problem:
    after just a few times going ice skating we got used to having the break in the front, but it is in the back on roller blades. So that changes everything. I thought rollerblading is easier, but not after ice skating. So I don't know, maybe later we'll do it. It would be nice.


  25. #25
    Ultimate BHUZzer ssipes's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    I have been seriously strength training for about 5 months and it has made a huge difference in my fitness level. Squats and lunges with weight 2X per week are sculpting my booty up and really increasing my stamina to dance, climb stairs, and just about everything else. Upper body has improved as well. I can do regular pushups for the first time in several years.


  26. #26
    Master BHUZzer sabrinabellydancer's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Marianna View Post
    But now I really want to learn ice skating, meaning not just the stuff I can do now, but learn spins and jumps. I think that would definitely improve my dancing. :)
    can you imagine how gorgeous it would be to incorporate ice skating turns technique into veil work?!?!


    Quote Originally Posted by ssipes View Post
    I can do regular pushups for the first time in several years.
    mad props for the regular pushups! those are no small feat.


  27. #27
    Advanced BHUZzer Marianna's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    I went skating today again - now I know how to go backwards. of course it's in the beginning stages, but I can actually travel backwards using my feet and last week couldn't not even move an inch.
    I also practiced some spins - they're hard, I could only make 1 rotation so far, but yes I think it would help my turns and spins in general.
    Actually I've already seen an improvement in the past couple of month, I just don't know if it was from skating. Maybe.


  28. #28
    Fotia
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Sabrina, I need to get more physical therapy, thanks for your concern ;-) In the meantime, I have been riding a recumbent and also a regular bicycle so my legs have grown really strong as well as keeping my abdominal muscles more fit without tightening them up too much.

    It's a backhanded blessing but now I HAVE to take time out to work on other areas that I should've been working on so it will all work out in the end!


  29. #29
    Official BHUZzer Fahimi's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    Am I too late to jump on board?

    My job situation is changing so I can't come up with a schedule until mid next week at the best, but I'd like to get back into high altitude hiking and rock climbing this summer. A friend finally took us climbing at the routes across the street from our house (we've been here nine years and had never been!) and it was so nice to be on the rock again. I noticed right away that my strong dancer core was helping as I felt to lack of balance sitting on the edge of a small cliff.

    For hiking I just want to get a few 13ers and maybe a 14er (13-14,000 ft mountains) or two in this summer. I've been reading a could guide books and realizing where my comfort level used to be and where I am now.... time to get to work!

    Question - do you think the strong quads I get when I am doing this stuff will help or hinder the strength required to do flat back bends?

    I just need to start training. We have a huge show coming up in August and I hope that plus my new job situation plus the music festival season doesn't interfere too much!


  30. #30
    Ultimate BHUZzer ZanaRaqs's Avatar
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    Re: April Cross Training Thread

    shems and anya-how long before you ladies could get off the ground w/the aerial silks? cuz i just came back with a friend and we both sucked lol but we're determined and going back each week


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