by Keila Chaliotis, Staff Writer
Do you remember them old days when working out was based on lifting heavy objects, running endlessly on treadmills, and tricking yourself into thinking that all you needed to do was keep a steady track of the same old boring gym or home based exercises to get in shape?
Well, those methods are still effective to this day along side of modern technology, but really, they are a kind of…boring! And to make things more interesting, dancing has become the latest effective way of exercising and it is slowly taking the place of more practical techniques.
So, are you in search of something new to rev things up? Are you ready to try something outside of the ordinary workout routines? Then here are three of the newest dance workout trends that are catching the attention of many worldwide and changing the way exercise was once viewed before.
This is a Brazilian dance which involves kicking, punching, slapping, headbutting, acrobatics, leg sweeps, knee/elbow strikes, and takedowns. Sounds, painful doesn’t it? Not to worry, it is all calculated practice without having to actually hit someone or get hit.
I actually remember watching a movie, which its name can’t come to mind right now, when I was a child in which this dancing technique was used for street fights. It really had caught my attention back then, but little did I know that 15 or 20 years later it would be used as a method for fitness.
Capoeira, with a Portuguese pronunciation, is a Brazilian martial art that combines elements of dance, acrobatics and music, and is sometimes viewed as a game. This exciting way of dancing was created in Brazil by African descendants with native Brazilian influences around the beginning of the 16th century.
This style of dance is known by its quick and complex moves, using mainly power, speed, and leverage for a wide variety of kicks, spins, and highly mobile techniques. But the center of it is the ginga, the back-and-forth, foot-to-foot movement that serves as the starting point for such leverage.
Capoeira which its purpose of being created was to be used in genuine self-defense situations, and is now being used as a great exercise for fitness, incorporates many sweeps and low moves.
When played as a game there is more emphasis on high moves, demonstrations of acrobatics, full cartwheels (called au) for evasion, and flips or other exotic techniques by mestres (masters), and performing an entertaining match for the audience.
Non-Impact-Aerobics (also known as Nia) is a dance program founded and created by Debbie Rosas, who is a leading fitness innovator, teacher, author, choreographer, performer, healer and artist. In this dance workout, she adds in yoga and martial arts to the mix to create a more sensuous experience for the many followers of her program.
Each class sets an “intention” in the beginning, such as grounding through the feet or opening through the heart, and goes through seven different rhythm cycles thereafter. Though other dance workouts are centered on movement and calorie-burning, Nia is focused to improving flexibility, strength, agility and stability.
The only down of it is that shedding off some calories is not this dance workout’s strength, but mistake it not, it is not any other couch potato exercise, as you should not expect to lose less than 400 calories after every workout.
The Bar Method workout sculpts an elongated, lean firm body. Burr Leonard is the founder and creator of this great and brilliant idea. Her Classes are an hour-long and combines elements of isometrics, interval training, dance conditioning, and sports rehabilitation to quickly and safely burn fat and carve muscle. And, no, there is no need to be afraid, there is no use of barbells here. I can assure you that this is all about dancing, and no heavy lifting once or ever. This may be the lowest on the “amusing” scal, compared to the other two dance programs, but it provides, arguably, the best results.
Using isometrics to target specific muscle groups, you can rest assured that you will have long, lean and sculpted muscles in no time. Focused on small movements, this exercise is the best around when it comes to recovering from and avoiding injury.
There are many more dance programs out there and maybe these may not catch your attention, but I’m sure one of the others will do so. We all have a different taste for rythm and exercising should always be about what brings us a good sense of feeling while carrying it out. So, I recommand you do a quick search on the web to find the type of dance program that best suits you so that you may soon get started on it.
Here is a list of dances that you can search for:
These are just a few more, but it is only to give you an idea of what is in style now for many gym programs and more. Check them out and see which one is your feel.