Dancing and Beyond

Functional Movement Prepares the Body for Dancing

Newton, MA – May 12, 2017 – Millions of people are fascinated with dancing, with 15 million watching “Dancing with the Stars” each week. Many people have tried to learn the dances, but couldn’t do it. Instructors teach how to dance, but the body of a typical novice isn’t able to move functionally, never mind dancing.

The “beginner” movements of conventional instruction require advanced functional movement skills, but most people don’t even have the basic skills of functional movement. The dropout rate is very high. Instructors teach dancing by a high volume of unconscious repetition and don’t know how to teach functional movement for dance. Before learning how to dance, individuals need to learn how to move.

Learning functional movement is the key

Any human movement can be described as changing positions with a proper shift of the center of body weight which applies to performing all dancing movements. It’s an approach based on kinesiology, the science of human movement, and a much more effective alternative to unconscious repetition. It requires knowledge of how joints and muscles interconnect and work together to facilitate functional movement.

Science reveals human bodies are built to dance

The human body is anatomically designed to move the center of weight naturally and perform dancing movements. Conventional dancing instruction is based on a high volume of repetition to train the body to execute dancing movements and steps. However, if the dance movements aren’t functionally correct, the result can be lack of improvement and mastery, muscle pain, discomfort, and loss of motivation.

The root of poor performance, injuries and dysfunction

The repetition method trains individual body parts to move, such as the hips, knees and shoulders, but is ultimately ineffective as it produces improper movements. Most people think that lifting a leg is accomplished by a single command. On the contrary, all muscles and joints of the body work in groups to produce movement. If one muscle or joint of the group is stronger than another, it leads to improper alignment and movement.

Knowing which joint and muscle groups work together produces proper functional movement and reduces the risk of injury. Those who attempt to learn to dance by repetition and training “legs” or “hips” will eventually plateau, learning will cease and the body will be forced into dysfunction. The repetition method also has a detrimental emotional component. Individuals often become frustrated and give up on trying to dance, which only leads to further frustration.

Learning to move before starting to dance

If you wish to succeed in dancing you need to learn the basic skills of functional movement to prepare you for performing dancing steps and figures properly. Knowing which muscles and joints are needed for a spin or turn will help individuals gain coordination, speed and balance which leads to increased confidence and mastery of the steps.

Dancing and Beyond

The Dancing and Beyond methodology developed by Lenny Levin, founder and CEO of Wellness and Beyond, provides would-be dancers with the training to develop functional movement that lays out the foundation of how to change movement positions with a proper shift of the center of body weight and translate it into efficient dancing movements.

The training approach is equally appropriate for any sport or physical activity requiring human movement. The philosophy of functional movement is highly effective and dance movement practicing can be incorporated into an individualized training program that builds the foundation of physical fitness.