Fear of the virus
2020 the year that brings so much load with it that it gives everyone the jitters at the moment. Is it not just the fear of becoming infected with this strange new virus, then it will be of all the consequences and restrictions imposed on us by the government (this of course not without valid reason!).
Bellydance class, the binding factor
This is an extra challenging period for dancers to keep working on technique and your physical stamina. Because maybe, like me, you are just used to being able to go to your live classes and meet your fellow students there. In addition to dancing, you also develop a strong personal bond with each other. You have a chat with each other before class, about how things are going and you often find out that you have more in common than you initially thought. Even though we all look different from the outside on the inside, there is a recognizable factor that connects us and what makes the dancing and training even more fun.
We take it for granted
It were those last classes just before the first lockdown that we did not yet realize how lucky we were to be together and that getting a live class was a real gift that we subconsciously were taking for granted every week.
I remember my dad calling me after the last “normal” belly dance class and said it would be “probably the last one for a 6 month period!” I got really mad at him! How could he say such a thing about MY belly dance classes, of course they would continue!
Life, as we know it, came to a stop
But nothing turned out to be further from the truth when the government decided last March to close all gyms and sports facilities that took place inside. For a moment it seemed as if my life was literally stopped. In the beginning there was really nothing to do. During that time, nobody had a clue what the word “zooming” meant and everyone was hoping that after those 3 weeks we would be able to get back to the studio.
The doubts about dance kicked in
But the silence of the center of Rotterdam hit like a bomb. Fortunately, I still had my job in healthcare, but that was it. Doubts about whether I actually enjoyed dancing that much also went through my mind. I noticed that I actually did not do as much on my own and wasn’t taking much action and somewhere I kind of liked the peace and not having as many appointments.
However, Nargis wouldn't be Nargis if she didn't do everything she could to give good structured lessons. The first zoom classes were a fact! And if I remember correctly this started with half an hour. I was also not sure whether I wanted to quit dancing so I just started to join the classes anyway. The weather was also quite nice at that time, so I could easily go up to the roof terrace of my flat and take the zoom classes there.
The reality of my student loft
I am not really the most neat and organized type out there. I simply did not have a pleasant place in my student loft. In addition, I was also a bit ashamed of the mess that other people might see and the fact that I am still in my dorm room at 30 does not really make me one of the proudest people.
But, anyway, it is the reality of my life and I will just have to make do with what I have.
I started with cleaning up my room and, above all, vacuuming well! Because we are often rolling on the ground. I was always looking for a good position for my laptop so that I could follow the classes well and Nargis could see me good too.
I was blocking myself
I also noticed that my own energy during these zoom classes was also different. After all, I was in a place where I normally just relax and don't necessarily have to do something all the time. And suddenly this had also become my dance space! That was pretty strange! Of course I already practiced in my room, but this was mainly going through new steps or new exercises. Not as intense as taking a real class. It was also different that I did not have to travel to my class but could just roll off the couch and then follow the class - I also noticed that I sometimes 'secretly' did not fully complete the warm up – Nargis couldn’t always see me properly when my webcam was placed upwards and I was down on the floor. There were some things in which I was holding myself back to bring out the best in myself.
How I got motivated again
But during this I saw again the example in my teacher Nargis that she has always been for me. My goodness…. What a tremendous go-getter that woman is and there is simply no better example! I think it's so great that someone can simply give the same good training through an online class as we get with a regular class. Her strength and motivation just splash through the screen. It is also very nice that she has her own dance studio where she can take you in with her online classes having fantastic images and sound. And I notice that through my own commitment - creating a more pleasant space and having a good webcam, it makes the classes just as good as the regular ones. In any case, it motivates me every week to work hard again and to continue with my own belly dance journey in the Salimpour format.
Are these tips something for you?
The following tips help me to follow the digital classes more energetically:
• Take a walk before class starts
We miss our journey to the studio, which takes us from one mindset to another. Take a short walk or get some fresh air outside before you start your class. This ensures a "mini" preparation before you start your warm up.
• Clean the area
One person will have more issues from this than the other. I always vacuum my floor before taking a zoom class. And that also works to prepare the space for the dance class
• Buy a qualitative webcam
It is not only nice for your teacher to be able to see you well, but it also allows your teacher to give you better corrections. So you can get more out of your class. And remember that you can now save a lot of money by not having to pay for petrol and / or parking costs. I myself bought a nice webcam for less than € 40,00!
• Always aim the webcam at yourself
So when you lie on the floor for an exercise, make sure you are visible to your teacher! This way you will be less inclined to "rest" during stomach exercises.
The power of zoom
It all takes some getting used to and it also demands a lot from our flexible commitment. But your commitment is also important for your dance class to be successful. And how bad is it to discover and develop new aspects of yourself in practicing at home? Go for it!
Hello! My name is Nargis!