So… You are tired, sore and your feet hurt? Let me tell you about Dancing Pregnant.
I‘m The One With The Kids.The one who has danced multiple pro-am competitions (and even one or two Pro comps) “in the family way”. The one whose entourage takes over a full table in the ballroom. I like dancing and I like family and my husband and I were bored enough to combine the two. And while I wouldn’t take my word for medical or professional advice (remember that whole [“Sarcastically writing, professional ballroom dancer”] thing from before? Yeah, it does not include a medical degree), if 10,000 hours gets you Expert Status, I am just that good after having four kids.
Want the down low on dancing with a watermelon? Here’s my take:
- Having a hard time finding contact position? [highlight]It will find you[/highlight].
- Closed hold feeling a little too cramped? [highlight]Your burgeoning belly will create space for you[/highlight], with those partners or students who hold too tightly.
- [highlight]It’s very easy to find promenade.[/highlight] Once you’re about 5 months or so, you and your partner can simply roll from closed position to promenade. Outside partner position is likewise easy to identify, although doing a Wing might be a bit more difficult.
- [highlight]You’re less intimidating.[/highlight] When dancers are in top form, their fitness level can be a little… scary. But now that you’re sporting a few extra pounds and life has taught most people that pregnant ladies can’t/won’t/don’t move much, new dancers can relate to what you’re doing a lot easier. (Random fact: each time I’ve been pregnant, my teaching hours has gone UP. I don’t recommend getting pregnant as a career move, but I have definitely gained new, long-term students while in my more rotund form.)
- No one can complain to you: “My feet hurt.” “My feet are swollen.” “I’m tired.” “It’s hard.” I mean, people could try to one-up you in the Complaints Department, but do you know who wins? YOU. [highlight]All the general dance downers are YOUR DAILY LIFE.[/highlight] As active as I have ever been while awaiting an offspring, all I really want to do is sit down with my feet up and eat some ice cream. (Like,10 times more the usual.)
- [highlight]Your ego will be kept in check, as well as your proprioception.[/highlight] Being surrounded by mirrors is usually a helpful thing in the studio, but your self-image is bound to take a hit or two when you’re comparing your pre-preggo body to your current state, or comparing yourself to your non-preggo studio mates. No matter how much you like or dislike the 40 weeks progression, you’ll have a new sense of feeling what you’re doing instead of relying on your reflection, which is a great lesson to take with you after that baby arrives.
- [highlight]People will think you’re awesome… or crazy.[/highlight] It is commonly said that ladies who are active should stay active during pregnancy, so for most dancers, that means… dancing. And that dancing usually continues for A LOT of those 40 weeks. While the ladies that do this usually think nothing of it, friends and strangers will think you’re Super Woman or Super Stupid. Take a deep breath and smile at either opinion; they’re both 50% correct.
Author: Kate Bratt [Riot & Frolic]
Photography: Kevin Yung Viratyosin | David Chin
Exclusively for Dance Comp Review