Almost everything you'd want to know (at least, right now) about bellydance...
Where does Bellydance come from?
Bellydance is now found all over world, but it is most commonly associated with Egypt and nearby regions.
However, there influences from many areas, including India, Turkey, Greece, Morocco, and other countries..
Each country offering its own unique style and music. Bellydance came to the US in the late 1800s and was
influenced by other dance forms, like modern, jazz, ballet, and even hip-hop.
Is "American Bellydance" authentic?
Yes and no. Traditional Egyptian belly dance has changed quite a bit over the past century. So much so that
it has more in common with the American style than perhaps its original form. Like many art forms,
bellydance continues to evolve as the world becomes a smaller place.
What should I wear to class?
Yoga pants or leggings and a fitted top (tank or sports bra) are perfect. Close fitting fabrics allow us to see
your leg/feet position and confirm that movements are safe and correct. Most students skip shoes, going
barefoot or wearing socks. You may wear a dance appropriate soft-soled shoe, if you prefer.
We have coin hip wraps on site but you are welcome to bring your own.
Do I have to show my belly?
No! Plenty of students keep their tummy covered. Just wear a fitted top so you can see your movements.
A hip scarf will help keep your focus on the proper hip movements.
What time should I arrive for class?
BrickHouse Yoga hosts many classes so arrive about 5 minutes ahead of class, especially during colder
Is Bellydance difficult to learn?
Yes and no. You don’t need previous dance experience to be successful but you are discovering new ways of
moving your body. Some movements will be easy; others will be unusual and will require some practice and
concentration to master. It becomes easier as you practice. After the first 4 to 6 weeks, you should feel a
noticeable difference as your brain and body work together more gracefully.
How long does it take to learn Bellydance?
Each person will follow a different time line based on their commitment level. Also, people learn at different
speeds. Of course, practicing daily will produce faster results.
Keep in mind that there are many different styles of Bellydance and learning them all of them would be a
tremendous endeavor. Bellydance education is an ongoing process – in fact, most every teacher out there
still considers themselves a student!
Do I have to perform?
No. We see Bellydance as creative mind body expression for the average woman. We do not want anyone to
feel they are being pushed out of their comfort zone.
For those looking for a public experience, we periodically offer students the opportunity to participate in a
recital. Other opportunities may also arise but these will always be on a voluntary basis.
What are the health benefits of Bellydance?
Bellydance strengthens and tones the whole body while developing grace and balance. Bellydance improves
flexibility -- especially of the spine and hips. Bellydance movements, when done correctly, strengthen the
deep postural muscles of the spine, abdominals, and hips.
Will I lose weight?
A typical bellydance class provides moderate, low-impact aerobic conditioning which makes it great
addition to a healthy lifestyle. You WILL sweat! But if you are attending only one class a week it won't make
you thin. However, it will improve your mental outlook which may help you feel better about yourself. That,
in turn, may support healthier choices that will help with weight concerns.
Can I bellydance while pregnant?
Yes! Bellydance is an excellent activity for toning the muscles used in childbirth. But before trying it, please
consult your healthcare provider about your personal situation.
Is bellydancing just glorified stripping?
NO!!!! It is a timeless, valid dance form that connects a woman to her body, her sensuality and her world. It
is a very personal expression that celebrates the sacred femininity in each woman. Its purpose is not
externally motivated by lust. Remember that this dance is also believed to have been a private social
celebration among women at gatherings where men were not allowed. Women expressed themselves using
movements that came naturally to the female form, beautiful and sensual by default, but not intended solely
as male enjoyment.