Belly dance: Come on guys, shake that belly | Chennai News

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If oriental dance is today an international phenomenon, then we must thank celebrities like Shakira for it! His songs were a major influence for many to get into belly dancing. And Bengaluru-based Bindu Bolar is among those who took shape after watching his songs. A certified belly dancer, she recently ran a workshop in Chennai, which was a hit with both women and men. Yes, you read that right. Men are also interested in belly dancing these days, Bindu says. “At first, I was also surprised. But when men can adopt traditional dance forms like Bharatanatyam and Kathak, why not belly dancing? At first a few of them were shy and reluctantly asked me if they could join the classes as well. But then, many men open up to this form of dance. It depends on each person’s point of view, ”she adds.
Do not entertain men
It is widely believed that belly dancing is a form of erotic dance used to seduce men. But Bindu says it’s just a misconception, adding, “Belly dancing isn’t meant to entertain men. This perception is the reason why people hesitate to take the first step and learn dance. But once you start learning it, you become confident in your body and the state of mind changes. In fact, I have done several shows at family reunions, birthday parties, corporate functions, and weddings, and people accept the dance form. It gives the dancer a feeling of autonomy.
It is also believed that belly dancing is reserved for people who have a slim figure. “Who said that?” she asks, “Women of different sizes come to me to learn. According to folklore, belly dancing was performed only by pregnant women. And this was done most often in front of the fertility goddess. We Indians love boxing stuff. This is something that I realized in my students, that once they start dancing they become very confident in their body, they have a feeling of contentment. But she doesn’t fully blame the media and movies for these misconceptions. She believes that a lot of baggage is on people’s minds.
The story
Belly dancing, according to Bindu, originated in the Middle East. “Belly dancing is said to be a very ancient form of dance that began almost 5,000 years ago. Another story is that it originated in India and was executed by nomads. And the third story is that the dance was an offering to the fertility goddess, ”shares Bindu, who has been learning it since 2000.“ My first teacher who taught me classical oriental style was Anna Olkinuora. I learned tribal fusion belly dance with Rachel Brice, Zoe Jakes and American style with Carolena Nerricio. My first workshop in Chennai was in 2015, ”she says.
Fitness quotient
Like any other form of dancing, does belly dancing help reduce weight? Bindu says, “You don’t have to lose weight; it’s not zumba or aerobics. But it is a form of physical exercise and can help tone your body. The effects of oriental dance are different for different people. Some say their posture improves, their back pain decreases, their digestion improves, and overall it feels good. So depending on the body type, the dance form can help you achieve what you want. I have had pregnant women who asked if they could register. But they should see a doctor before enrolling and learn only from certified teachers. It will not be as intensive as for the other dancers.
Choose music wisely
The kind of music you can belly dance to varies. Bindu says, “If you are doing ballet dancing, then you have to select tunes accordingly. You also need music and traditional costumes. But if not, you can go for anything from Bollywood to hip-hop to techno. You can have any kind of music for the western style.


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