Taking a break from my daily Pilates ritual, I went into Manhattan to take a Balinese dance class I had signed up for the week prior. I've been studying Indonesian and South/Southeast Asian performance and I wanted to put my research to the test!
We learned a small routine for traditional male and female dances. The instructor is an industry professional whose directions were clear and concise. It helps me to take classes in other disciplines I have no knowledge of, in order to learn how to be a better Pilates instructor for those who have no knowledge of Pilates when they come to take a class from me for the first time.
I was happy that I was able to use my experience with movement to keep on rhythm and learn the positions, but it was still quite difficult to assemble each posture with the appropriate transition and maintain a good form.
**Something else interesting about the discipline of Balinese dance is that it requires different bodily strength and flexibility than western dance. In Bali, talented dancers can move their limbs, eyes, wrists and arms with incredible precision, however, dancers (my teacher in particular) do not have the flexibility to touch their toes, unlike most ballerinas and other classically trained western dancers, yogis and Pilates students, who can do so with relative ease.
All in all, I'm excited to continue my Balinese dance training and learn more about the culture and the way in which the performance relates to the body and of course, Pilates method!
My shoes and clothes are wet from the pouring rain as I waited for construction workers to assemble ramps for us to get on the train. Feet are tired from running to the studio to get there on time, but who cares--I had a bad ass time :)