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  1. #1
    Junior Member bopeep's Avatar
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    Default Moves affected by size of dancer?

    I don't know if I'm being overly sensitive or if I ought to adjust what I'm doing - but I'd like to nip any bad habits before they become too established! I am a newbie and just starting to get some of the moves, but I have noticed that some of them look very different to me, depending on weather the dancer is thin or fat or somewhere in between.

    I'm fat - I take a size 14 (American size) and I find hip circles look too big when I do them, but hip drops look good. Shimmies with the knees look better than shimmies with the hips. Other things like that.

    Do you more experienced people find that there are some moves that don't work well or need slight variations with a larger dancer, and some moves where the fat is a bonus? Or am I just being nuts?

    BP

  2. #2
    V.I.P. jenc's Avatar
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    EVENTUALLY you will have enough moves to have a preference for those moves which suit your body and your style of dancing. For now as a beginner, you need to try harder with the moves that do not come so easily to you. It may be that those end up being some of your better moves!!

    And they ALL count towards gaining more flexibility and fluidity

  3. #3
    Senior Member Marya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bopeep View Post
    I don't know if I'm being overly sensitive or if I ought to adjust what I'm doing - but I'd like to nip any bad habits before they become too established! I am a newbie and just starting to get some of the moves, but I have noticed that some of them look very different to me, depending on weather the dancer is thin or fat or somewhere in between.

    I'm fat - I take a size 14 (American size) and I find hip circles look too big when I do them, but hip drops look good. Shimmies with the knees look better than shimmies with the hips. Other things like that.

    Do you more experienced people find that there are some moves that don't work well or need slight variations with a larger dancer, and some moves where the fat is a bonus? Or am I just being nuts?

    BP
    Unless your teacher's body type is exactly like yours, your moves will look different. As jenc mentioned you will eventually adopt your own dance vocabulary that suites you, but that is aways down the road. Focus on properly executing the moves and you will be fine.

    Marya

  4. #4
    Senior Member Gia al Qamar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marya View Post
    Unless your teacher's body type is exactly like yours, your moves will look different. As jenc mentioned you will eventually adopt your own dance vocabulary that suites you, but that is aways down the road. Focus on properly executing the moves and you will be fine.

    Marya
    Perfectly stated.
    Your body is unique as is the story of your life...you aren't supposed to look like someone else...you're supposed to celebrate YOUR self it all it's glory.
    Size 14, 16, 18 isn't 'fat'. It's normal and average and I'll bet that you look gorgeous dancing!
    Gia

  5. #5
    Junior Member bopeep's Avatar
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    OK, thanks - I will just worry about getting the moves right, and worry about how they look later.

    My teacher is very slim, and has never said anything negative about being larger (actually, she is very plus positive, and encouraging). I got to see her troupe dance this weekend - three of the girls are on the large side, one my size, one bigger and one slightly smaller, and the rest of the girls are slim. They all did similar moves without adjusting for size (much) and I thought that some moves looked better or worse, deping on size.

    I think what I really need to work on here, is my attitude. I have been a victim of the 'thin' brainwashing for far too long. It affected my will to dance, and I am trying to shed it so that I don't get lost again, but it's hard to be completely rid of 20 years of defeatist attuitdes overnight!

    During the show where I saw the troupe dance, I got to do two dances that were very simple choreographies (it was a show for dance students, to 'show off' what is possible with a few months or a few years of training). It felt soooo good to do it and I didn't really care how I looked, I was in heaven, but I'd also kind of like the 'victims/viewers' to enjoy it too!

    So I'll take your advice, practice my buns off some more and figure out how to please the audience when I am good enough to make that a possibility!

    BP

  6. #6
    Junior Member Sayyadina's Avatar
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    Fabulous isn't the number inside your jeans. It is what you become when the music starts to play. And, that has nothing to do with body size.

    Though, I will say health should come first.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gia al Qamar View Post
    Perfectly stated.
    Your body is unique as is the story of your life...you aren't supposed to look like someone else...you're supposed to celebrate YOUR self it all it's glory.
    Size 14, 16, 18 isn't 'fat'. It's normal and average and I'll bet that you look gorgeous dancing!
    Gia
    wonderful comment---size 14 is a great size..you will have a great "shim" in your shimmy

  8. #8
    V.I.P. Kashmir's Avatar
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    Yes, different body shapes and sizes will affect how movements look and once you are on your own you can select those that make you look best.

    At this stage however, it is possible the moves look different because your technique isn't the same as your teacher's. I'm a size 16 (and don't consider myself "fat" by any yardstick) but "proper" waist driven shimmies look best on me.

  9. #9
    Junior Member bopeep's Avatar
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    Please don't think I am being negative when I call myself 'fat'. I say that with tongue very firmly planted in cheek . I actually don't feel truely fat, largely because I have lost 20 pounds in the last year from working out - I was a size 18 and had just tipped over into the 'obese' category on the BMI index (yeah yeah, I know, I don't take that thing seriously, but it did give me a shove towards getting healthier). I really did feel fat then. I felt tired, heavy, and very out of shape. Now, I feel like I could fly! Or at least dance! And I do feel really good about myself, partly because I have lost some weight I needed to lose, and partly because belly dancing has made me more comfortable in my own skin.

    A large part of my questioning about how weight affects moves just comes from my lack of familiarity with how a specific move looks, or rather, should look. When I do something and I don't like the way it looks, a lot of that comes from the fact I'm not doing it right yet. I know that not all moves will be as suited to my taste, shape, size and build as others, and that that will be partly my decision and partly be something I figure out from feedback from others. I am trying to follow my teacher's technique, but I know I will be putting my own stamp on it no matter how close I get - I am built differently than she is and I will never be like her (I don't want to dance exactly like her anyway - I want to dance like me ).

    I am not overly concerned about this, just curious. I am at the point where I have just learned how much there is to learn! I don't know what I need to worry about now, and what I can let go until later, but you guys are helping me to figure this out!. I'm in this for the fun, but I also want to improve and have more fun

    Thanks!

    BP

  10. #10
    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    Lots of things determine how a movement looks, from expertise to waist length to thigh strength to how many fused discs a dancer may have in her back. I have been a thin dancer and I have been a thick dancer, and in my opinion, weight is the least of what affects a dancer's performance.

    I'm happy you began dancing and I'm happy you have joined the forum, BP.

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