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Daily Top 10: 10 Places on Long Island to Take Belly Dancing Classes

Belly dancing has its roots in Middle Eastern dance but is a translation of the French "danse du ventre," which is actually a misnomer as every part of the body, especially the hips, is involved ...

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Belly dancing has its roots in Middle Eastern dance but is a translation of the French “danse du ventre,” which is actually a misnomer as every part of the body, especially the hips, is involved in the dance. Belly dancing gained popularity during the 18th and 19th centuries in the West due to the displays of Middle Eastern dancers at various World’s Fairs. Dancers often perform in costume which varies in style from region to region. Western belly dancing garb is accredited to Victorian painters’ ideas of “Orientalism” and harem fantasies and not with traditional Middle Eastern dress. This style, called bedlah (Arabic for “suit”), includes a fitted top or bra, a fitted hip belt, and a skirt of harem pants. Some Western dancers also wear a headpiece. The separate pieces are often embellished with decorations such as beads, sequins, coins, braids and embroidery. This differs from the Egyptian costume in that Egyptians often go without a belt. However, regions such as Lebanon and Turkey also use the bedlah style of dress.

Belly Dancing is a non-impact, weight-bearing exercise making it suitable for people of all ages. It is cited as a good exercising technique to help ward off osteoporosis in seniors as it improves flexibility of the torso and is beneficial to the spine. It also helps strengthen the legs and long muscles of the back through hip movements. It’s a great way to lose weight, gain confidence, and feel healthier. Consult the follow list of business on Long Island that offer belly dancing instruction.
1. Inner Spirit Yoga Center
24 Vernon Valley Road, Northport – (631) 262-YOGA
2. Balance Yoga & Healing
680 East Jericho Turnpike, Huntington – (631) 423-2055
3. LI Dance Fitness
658-2E Motor Parkway, Hauppauge - (631) 231-1308
4. Tropix Dance Studio
608 Merrick Road, Lynbrook – (516) 599-3214
5. Elite Fitness
203 Birch Hill Road, Locust Valley – (516) 674-9389
6. Sasha’s Bellydancing
5 Stuyvesant Circle East, Setauket-East Setauket – (631) 689-8400
7. Sasha’s Bellydancing
2371 Middle Country Road, Centereach – (631) 689-8400
8. Art of Dance Studio: Diva-Yoco Belly Dance
7 Flowerfield, St. James – (631) 528-8292
9. K'mika's Long Island Belly Dance Studio
86 Terry Road, Smithtown – (631) 834-5519
10. Belly Dancer Long Island Aenah
147 Strathmore Street, Valley Stream – (516) 375-9233