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5 Tips For Your First Dance Cardio Class

  • July 13, 2016
  • By Brittany
5 Tips For Your First Dance Cardio Class

Hellooooo!  Sorry for the absence on Monday but I traveled back from NYC on Monday.  While I have A LOT to tell you, I’m saving it for another post.  

One thing I can tell you is that while I was there I took two dance cardio classes.  Now, dance cardio and I go way way back.  I grew up dancing.  Ballet, jazz, modern and hip hop were all part of my repertoire.  Even though I grew up dancing, I would say that I’m a minority in dance cardio classes.  Most people I see in the classes don’t have formal training, they just want to dance. 

Stepping into your first dance cardio class can be overwhelming and intimidating, but I’ve put together this list to help you navigate your first class.  Here are 5 Tips For Your First Dance Cardio Class.

Dance for a Cause 2

  1.  Leave Your Ego at the Door.  Taking a dance cardio class is a huge leap for a lot of people and yes, there will be choreography.  You may not get it and you may feel a little silly at times, but you can’t bruise an ego that isn’t there.  So leave it at the door and instead, come in and have some fun.
  2.  Stand in the Front.  The tendency for newcomers is to want to hide in the back.  Now, front and center may not be the best spot for you but find a spot near the front.  This way you can watch the instructor making it much easier to grasp the choreography.  Also, if you stand in the second row, you can watch the person in front of you if you get lost.  Generally the front row divas are regulars so they will either know the choreo already or pick it up quickly.  (Trust me–at one of the classes I went to over the weekend, I practically got pushed aside by the front row divas.  Don’t let that happen!  Stand your ground).
  3.   Dress the Part.  More so than any other fitness class, I find that dressing for a dance cardio class really helps me get into the groove.  Wear some funky pants or a cool top.  Try pairing baggy pants with a tight top or leggings with an off the shoulder top.  Give high top sneakers a try.  Or grab a pair of disco looking leggings.  Just as if you were dressing to go out dancing with friends, wear something that will allow you to move but also inspire a little fun. 
  4.  Pump Yourself Up.  Create a dance cardio playlist and listen to it on your way to class.  George Balanchine, a famous ballet choreographer, once said “see the music, hear the dance” basically meaning that dance visually expresses music.  Music is so important in dance and some of my favorite cardio classes have amazing playlists.  Get yourself ready by listening to your favorite tunes and then try to feel the music in class.  It will help you accent the beats correctly!
  5.  Have Fun.  Dancing is supposed to be fun.  What’s the point of doing it if you aren’t enjoying it?  Get lost in the movements and the music.  Martha Graham, another famous dance choreographer, once said “Nobody cares if yiu can’t dance well.  Just get up and dance.  Great dancers are great because of their passion.”  Have some passion, show some energy and just live in the moment!

Bellydance 1

Readers, what are some of your tips for a dance cardio class?  Have you ever been to a class where you felt embarrassed and what did you do?  Favorite song to dance to?

By Brittany, July 13, 2016
  • 2
  • Shawna
    July 14, 2016

    ahhh this totally makes me want to take a dance cardio class! i used to take Zumba when i belonged to a salsa/Latin dance school, and i LOVED that class, as the instructor was an amazing Latin dancer and added so many awesome moves and made it super dancey (and challenging). i haven’t gone to one in years tho — this makes me want to find a place to take one here! i know i don’t take advantage of all the classes in NYC, mainly due to time and money. i have to workout early bc i work long days 3 days a week and my weekends are always reserved for running!

  • Holly
    July 16, 2016

    Cardio dance is like swimming–the best all around workout! Your tips for making a cardio dance class “your own” are spot on. I read this and said, “Yes!” that is what I need to do next time I take a cardio dance class. What I have done is just watch the instructor and smile–the instructors seem to pay attention to those having fun. Once I went to a cardio dance that was high energy and fun–the instructor knew my name and really encouraged me with her enthusiasm—she was right in front of me clapping, dancing and getting me to mirror her moves.

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