Oriental Dance Basic Steps

Oriental Dance Basic Steps


Oriental dance, o belly dance, have basic steps that are essentials to learn to dance.  I classify these movement in two: Undulations and sharp movements. In this article, I will focus in hips undulations.  These are the basic movements I learned when I began belly dancing.

Hips Undulations:

* Hip Circles: It is like drawing an imaginary horizontal circle with your pelvis engage in the movement.  When the pelvis moves to the front, you contract the gluts.  And when they move to the back you need to contact the abdomen.  The circle can be little, medium, or large, and you can incorporate your torso into the movement.  When your hip is to the right, your body goes to the left and reversal.

* Outside Vertical Hip Circle: contract your pelvis and take it to the front, release it and displace it to the back and contract  again (you need to feel like you are making a circle)

* Inside Vertical Hip Circle:  contract pelvis and move it to the back, release and move to the front.  This movement is the opposite from the one before this.

*  African Circle: First, lift right hip up, contract stomach, lift left hip up and release pelvis. In this circle the pelvis do not stay engage during the entire movement, knees are slightly flex and they bend alternatively with the hips. This circle can be made in four or eight movements.

*  Horizontal Eight:  Straight knees.  Right hip goes to the back  and to the right.  When it gets to the back begin with the left hip.  If you don’t transfer your weight, there will be no movement.

* Inside Vertical Eight: Flexing your knees, right hip goes right, up, goes inside, down, and repeat the same in the other hip.  You most feel a wave from side to side in your hips.

* Outside Vertical Eight: Lift right hip up, move to the right, down, move inside, and repeat with the other side.  This is the famous Shakira move that everyone wants to learn.

* Eight Combination: you need to begin this movement with your knees flex.  Displace your hip back and up, slowly.  When you reach the highest point begging to go down and it can move forward.

Don’t get upset if you cannot manage these movements in the beginning.  Oriental dance movements are not easy to learn or control. Your body is your instrument. Only by practicing you will learn to play that instrument to be able to communicate with your audience.


4 thoughts on “Oriental Dance Basic Steps

  1. Buen día julissa: Me gusto mucho el blog de danza oriental, yo estoy recopilando información sobre el tema ya que deseo aprender de esta bella danza. Soy de Panamá y me gustaría saber si podría ofrecer información de grupos, escuelas relacionadas al tema. Gracias, que tenga un excelente día.

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