As I have been writing about it the last few days, you might know that I am dancing up a storm. Oh, well, maybe, that’s an exaggeration of what my body is actually executing as I choreograph dance pieces that will work for a dance (flash) mob. Years ago my first husband Steve Horowitz and I created a dance exercise program that became the official fitness program for the metropolitan YMCAs and Jewish Community Centers. Our program was unique because it was a bit more sophisticated than some of the popular programs at that time (Jacki Sorensen® was the biggest program). I guess our program had a special appeal that at first seemed to be a challenge; people wanted just to walk in and do the steps without any need to practice, thinking that they would not get a good workout while learning the combinations. My philosophy at that time was to create a modified dance class atmosphere where you learned a combination that challenged you a bit and added to your agility, coordination and aerobic conditioning. I wanted our program to allow people learn something more than just doing combinations of repetitive steps that were already part of their movement repertoire.
It turned out that people loved our Dynamic Aerobics® and came back year after year and danced a lot of the dances at their local fitness and summer fairs. We would perform in street fairs, and people would tell my students that they looked like dancers because they moved so well. It was great fun, and I choreographed hundreds of routines over the years that we taught instructors during two-day workshops two and three times a year. It was a great time when we met so many wonderful instructors and participants along the way.
Now that I am choreographing some routines that I can teach quickly, I recall fondly the times that I worked out at such a high level, leaping, jumping and kicking and never got out of breath. Today, as I choreographed Donna Summer’s “Hot Stuff” and reviewed the steps at as low a level as possible, I needed breaks to catch my breath. I have learned over the past three years that walking is my high level exercise now and that lifting my foot up higher than my head is but a memory as I can barely lift a leg higher than my hip height. But the joy I get from dancing even at this feeble level is still as high, and maybe some days even more as I think that I never appreciated what I able to do because it was always about dancing a bit better every time.
That last part has not changed as my goal is still to do what I’m doing a little bit better every day. If I can walk at a low level through half of the routine today, maybe I can get through three-quarters tomorrow. But, then, again, maybe I will be dancing at the same level every day because of cancer’s limitations on one’s body. It doesn’t matter, though, as long as I am dancing. I do wear a pedometer every day (that’s laughable in some ways) and logged a startling 1,000 steps just doing my dancing yesterday and again today. I guess that’s worth something. Maybe I’ll write the notes up and publish them here for others who might want to join me sometime for a cyber flash mob. It sure beats walking on the treadmill, too, which I find terminally boring.
In the meantime, Marvin watches me and encourages me both to dance and to take it easy. And, yesterday he sent me this cartoon. Think he knows his wife well?5 6 7 8 © 2004–2012 Donna Peach. All rights reserved.