Wednesday, October 13, 2010

This Girl Can't Dance

Kim Watters here. Okay so last month I told you about my experience with the YMCA. This month I have to admit that I did attend the Zumba class offered. Going in I knew that I didn’t really know how to dance. I just didn’t know how bad I really didn’t know how to dance meant.
The Sunday afternoon class is packed with people. Great. I can get lost in the crowd. At least my friend, Debbie, that I convinced to take the class with me is in the same shoes. We hide in the back row, hoping to go unnoticed. Er-my friend is almost 6’ tall. No way that’s going to happen. In comes the instructor, who zeroes in on us first thing.

“Welcome class. If this is your first time, just follow along and do your best. Don’t over do yourselves and there are no wrong moves.”

“Good.” I whisper to Debbie. “That instills a lot of confidence in me. What have we gotten ourselves in to?”

Debbie laughs and nods, wearing a horrified expression.

The music starts and we’re off. Egads.

“Come, ladies, let’s go. Get that heart rate up. We’ve got to move it, move it.”

What is the instructor doing? Where’s the ease into the workout? I’m breaking into a sweat and it isn’t from exertion yet. I stumble to the right and then the left, all my klutziness there for all to see in the full-length mirrors on two sides of the room. My friend isn’t faring much better. At least at this point we’re still laughing. Somewhat. Forward, back, to the right, to the left. Add the arms or weapons as the other women in the class must be thinking about now. My body has taken on a life of it’s own. And I’m still at least one beat behind everyone else in the class. Just when I think I’ve got the move down, we change to something else.

Judging from the warm-up, the instructor can dance. I’ve never felt inadequate before until I realize that my hips just don’t go in that direction. The class goes left, Debbie and I go right. We jiggle this way, the class jiggles the other way. The salsa? Really? One , two, three, now switch. Maybe I should be looking for a class that works out to the Polka. Being of German and Polish decent, I may find that a little more my style. Nonetheless, we stick it out and make it to the end with only a few bruises.

Despite the fact I can’t dance, I had fun and went again. And keep going although my hips still don’t go the same direction as the instructor’s. I finally get the hang of the dances and now the instructor has changed things up. The moves are even harder. I’ve given up trying to learn them and just bounce around to the music in a mad attempt to look like I know what I’m doing, but I’m still having fun.

The same goes for writing. Go beyond your comfort zone and explore options that seem difficult. Change things up to add variety. Change a genre. Try a new profession for your characters that requires a bit of research. Something in your book not working? Try something else. But most of all have fun. See you in Zumba later.


  1. Too funny, Kim. I've been to Zumba and had the same experience. For some reason these young instructors think the blasting music and their added moves and grooves is going to be easy to pick up. LOL They're so into the moment, I think they've forgotten they have a class behind them.

    As you know, I did the genre changing by taking on mystery and still maintaining my contemps. It was fun, lots of researching, more than I ever imagined, but the good news is it taught me the importance of detailed description, scene, smell, etc. In my case, it taught me to be a better writer. :-)

    Great article!

  2. Thanks for stopping by Carolyn. I'm so glad I'm not alone with the whole Zumba thing. We'll have to go together some time. :) Keep up the good work (and I always thought you were a good writer anyway!)

  3. I'm glad you are brave enough to take the class. Me, I just plug in my Richard Simmons. That way I don't have to embarrass myself in front of a lot of other people. Only the cat knows if I misstep.

  4. Thanks for the inspiration, Kim!

    Peace, Julie

  5. Kim, you had me rolling.

    Carolyn, great to see you here.

    Beemama, I have Richard Simmon's tapes, too. But for a month now, I've been promising to use my Wii Fit.

    Julie, she is an inspiration, isn't she. You ought to see her. She practically lives next door to me (same state). She used to be a model, for real.

  6. Thanks for stopping by beemama. If I didn't go to the class, I probably wouldn't have the motivation to work out at all. The one thing I didn't mention though was there were other newbies too, so we were all in the same boat. :)

    Thanks for stopping by Julie. Care to join me at the next class?

    Pamela :). See if you attend the classes, you have to work out. That's why I never got the Wii Fit. Thanks for your kind words. See you soon.


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