Dancing Through Health & Physical Challenges: Part 2

As I returned to my Latin Cardio dance class with a doctor’s clearance letter, my instructor welcomed me back with some words of caution: I MUST take breaks as I feel needed. I was glad to be back so I swallowed my pride and followed his advice. I took it easy (most of the time) and I took my breaks. But despite being cleared for low impact cardio, I was still having the same problems.

Since I couldn’t get any answers from doctors, I decided to get experimental and take matters into my own hands.  I’ve been reading about the benefits of exercising, and decided that I need to really work on improving strength and endurance.  So I started exercising outside of dance class to help increase my stamina to improve my performance.

At the gym, in front of the huge mirror, I go through Salsa, Samba and Cha-Cha, timing myself to see how long I can dance before I must stop for a break.  I also alternate between the treadmill and the elliptical machine several times a week.

Exercising regularly has definitely improved my performance, but I’m still not there yet. I still have to take many breaks in the Latin Cardio dance class, more than an average person.  Also, some days are better than others. But the important thing is that I have noticed a difference :)

My advise to anyone having health or physical challenges while dancing is to keep on dancing and don’t quit :) Do what you can and don’t let anyone push you to do more than you know you should, including yourself. Be gently on your body and listen to it; stop as many times as you need to and take breaks. Get a physical to make sure there isn’t anything seriously wrong!

I’m glad I got checked out, because now I know that I can push myself a little without having threatening health repercussions. Making the decision to go to a doctor and get a physical was the best thing I could have done for myself.

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What have you been doing to improve your performance;  increase your stamina for ballroom dancing or latin dancing; and overcome your health and physical challenges?

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