How many people would like to
learn to dance? I had been afraid to learn to dance. I did not want to look
foolish. Come on if you are honest you know that is true. I always thought I
had two left feet and could never learn how to dance.
How about taking a Chance?
Okay, so I was convinced I
would never learn how to dance. Then again I had not counted on a friend of
mine who just by chance was a dance instructor. He was convinced he could teach
me to dance. Not only was he going to teach me to dance he was going to make it
fun. He promised me that when he finished teaching me I would enjoy dancing.
Two Left Feet.
I had been convinced I would
never learn to dance. I was so convinced I made a foolish bet. Never, say never
because you will feel really embarrassed when you lose your bet. It started
with soft music and just swaying my body to the tempo of the music. Just
standing alone and feeling the music. Sounds simple and almost everyone has
done the same thing at one time or another.
It is Simple I Promise.
The first few lessons were
just that simple. I moved to the rhythm of different types of music. I was
encouraged to move by my teacher and sometimes he would move to the rhythm with
me. Two weeks after I started my lessons to learn how to dance I felt better
about learning to dance. Maybe, just maybe, I could do this after all.
A Box Step is Just a Box.
My instructor asked me if I
knew what a box was and I replied I knew what a box was why what for? Dancing
egghead, just dancing, follow me; now when I step back you step forward. It is
just walking but you are letting me led you. Did I step on his toes? Yes, I
stepped on his toes several times. He just laughed and said I would get used to
following him. We moved around like a simple box. It was called a box step and
he claimed almost everyone knew how to dance the box-step.
Hey, I Can Do This!
I practiced the box-step at
home it was not as hard as I thought it would be and I was good at the
box-step. I confess I was awkward in the beginning it was hard to learn to let
someone led me. He told me I would become accustom to being led and he was
right. He started the music, walked to me, stood in front of me, and extended
his arms. One hand on my waist and one hand extended upward to hold mine
shoulder-high. He led me around in an awkward box-step. See, I told you, you
could do it.
Maybe, I Can Learn More?
I became proficient dancing
the box-step and wanted to learn more. My instructor laughed when I asked about
learning to Cha, Cha. He was more than willing to teach me the Cha, Cha if I
would go out on a date dancing with him. I really had not thought of him that
way but told him okay I go dancing with him. I had gained confidence and knew I
could at the very least do the Box-Step if I forgot how to Cha, Cha.
Dancing with the Instructor.
The night was warm and the
instructor arrived at ten o’clock to escort me to a Latin Dance Club. It turns out that my instructor
always picked one student to take dancing. I was going to be an advertising
example. I would like to say I objected but I really thought it was going to be
fun. I was right it was fun and I had a great time. I remembered how to Cha, Cha
and did not dance the Box-Step all night.
Okay I Lost the Bet.
It was the first time I had
not thought about loosing a bet. Don’t get me wrong I AM no Gambler. I would
not bet on a sure thing but I will bet on me. I know what my limitations are
and I am careful about those limitations. Dancing is great exercise and I
recommend it to everyone. My objections were due to fear and lack of
confidence. My learning to dance dissolved my fear of physical limitations and
bolstered my self-confidence.
Fear of trying something is a
common reaction to the unknown. Even trained Marines have a flight or fright
reaction and their battle cry over-rides the fear. Perhaps some fear is a good
thing but it shouldn’t keep anyone from exploring possible positive outcomes. I
was terrified of looking foolish to my peers. There was really no need to be
afraid many of my peers had the same fear. A friend of mine asked me about the
dance lessons. I told him it was worth the time to take for his-self. I knew he
would enjoy dancing and that I could recommend my instructor. I told him I
would go dancing with him anytime. I knew he was going to have fun the way I did.
Would I recommend learning to
dance? Yes, I would recommend everyone learn to dance. Learning to dance was
easy for me despite my fear of looking foolish. I became a good dancer and
enjoyed the social atmosphere of Dance Clubs. Dancing bolsters self-confidence
and is excellent exercise. I look forward to dancing with my peers and enjoying
Author: Whitney Joh a retired school teacher.