Belly Dancing Fitness

Amira Mor
Year Released: 2005

Categories: Bellydance

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This "workout" starts with a mini-performance by Amira which really gets you excited about learning to bellydance! Amira looks fantastic and moves with seductive grace; she literally strikes me as some sort of modern-day fertility goddess! :-)

The workout was divided into several segments, including arm moves, lower body moves, walking, and dancing. In the first segment, Amir talks briefly about the type of outfit you want to wear to make the best presentation, including hip scarves “for the fun of the shimmy!” She also talks a little bit about breathing. Then come the arm moves, including wrist circles, snake arms, and shoulder shimmies. She gives excellent form pointers in her instructions. For example, during the snake arms, she said to raise your shoulder, then elbow, then wrist; then lower in the same order. She also gave excellent tips, such as this one for shoulder shimmies (which are next to impossible for me!) Place your hands against a wall and practice moving your shoulders forward and backward in opposition while keeping your body straight. I found this really helpful! In the chest moves segment, Amir again gave form pointers, such as don’t raise your shoulders while lifting your chest. I noticed that she did not mirror cue, but that wasn’t a problem as I just followed her example. The lower body segment included hip shimmies, hip circles, and hip drops. This was the most fun, ‘cause almost everybody likes to shake their booty! :-)

Next came the walking. I found the forward walk (with hip lifts) to be fairly easy, but the backward step (with hip drops) was a little more difficult. I would have liked her to spend more time on this, but I suppose I could always “rewind” for more practice. Finally – the dancing! We start off dancing with Amira alone, then the background dancers join in, then it turns into a beautiful free-for-all, with the dancers seamlessly transitioning from the “workout” outfits they were wearing into their “performance” outfits. Although I couldn’t really follow along, it was sort of interesting and fun (and even instructional, if you really pay attention!) to see the individual personalities of the background dancers shine through their own interpretive dance. A few of them were quite good, while a few others lacked real technical skill (this coming from a bellydancing neophyte!) The backgrounders do a great deal of “free-styling” on their own, then Amir dances back into the camera’s frame and everybody starts following along with what she is doing. Then she dances out of the frame, and the dancers go back to doing their own thing. I pretty much just watched them dance, but I still enjoyed it very much!

Overall, I felt this was an excellent instructional video. You won't become a bellydancer just by watching this video, but you will pick up some technical aspects of the dance, as well as form pointers ... and you will can learn some different moves by watching the various dancers perform this most seductive of dances!

Instructor Comments:
Amira is a beautiful woman, very sure of herself and of her body, and it shows in her performance. Her voice was annoying at first, but I got used to it :-)

Debbie J