Dance Yourself Slim

Shimmy Into Shape: Burn Calories With Belly Dancing

Fitness belly dancing is worth a try, especially if your workout routine needs a little shaking up.


belly-dancing
Belly dancing classes have long been staples at community centers, but theyve recently begun to shake their way into the mainstream. Major health club chains like Crunch, New York Health & Racquet, and 24-Hour Fitness now offer their own versions, giving the Middle Eastern dance a fitness twist.

The classes still embrace the “love your body no matter what” mind-set and celebration of femininity typical of traditional classes. Theyre also still set to Arabic music (some dancers even wear silky hip-wraps embellished with dangling gold coins, though theyre not required).

But theyve traded the customary stop-and-go format for a nonstop, heart-pumping cardio workout. As a result, you tone and whittle your middle while burning up to an impressive 350 calories in a 60-minute class.

You can try your hand—and hips—at this new breed of belly dancing at home, too, thanks to the many books and DVDs that have come out during the past couple of years. Either way, fitness belly dancing is worth a try, especially if your workout routine needs a little shaking up.
Michelle Bender
Last Updated: April 01, 2006

Get the latest health, fitness, anti-aging, and nutrition news, plus special offers, insights and updates from Health.com!

More Ways to Connect with Health
Advertisement