Why should one learn classical dance? part 2

So why should one learn Indian classical dance? As a student, teacher, performer and mother, I offer Ten reasons:

#1 It is an excellent form of exercise as it includes yoga based stretching, aerobic and high-endurance movement levels. Besides the basic grammar of movement, in pure dance or nritta, the focus is on developing speed, strength and stamina. So you will burn more calories in half an hour than free-style dancing or most recommended exercise/gym plans.

#2 It offers great benefits in developing the body of a growing child eg. improves posture, strengthens the arch of the foot and fingers and eye & neck muscles.

#3 All the external benefits of exercise such a toned body, glowing skin and healthy hair ( not to mention a pretty way of smiling more often) can also be gained from it.

#4 It offers many therapy benefits to handicapped children e.g. improves body balance and mind-limb coordination. Can be taught to visually and hearing impaired individuals as well.

#5 Indian Classical dance has been described as being at the top of the pyramid of all other art forms. i.e. a student/performer has to learn the Language (Sanskrit or classic regional), song/literature (sahitya) and the music composition (sangeeta) and imbibe the visual ( as evidenced in traditional painting and temple sculpture), spatial (expanding or truncating movements according to stage space) & time (rhythm) elements. The literature and ethos of the dance compositions are based on mythology, customs and traditions still alive in the country. The dancer brings about the grand synthesis of all the arts in his/her self and thus the performance. This means that a student of dance is a well rounded student of the arts.

If you have got this far then my next post will give you the next 5 reasons. Go for it!

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