Review of Jennifer Jiménes’ Let’s Dance Together – Prenatal Dance Fitness

4 thoughts on “Review of Jennifer Jiménes’ Let’s Dance Together – Prenatal Dance Fitness”

  1. “Both times I did this video, I was amazed at how creative I could be with that amount of prompting”

    YES YES YES YES YES!

    One of the big “ah has” for me when I started thinking about how to teach improv is that when you have too many options, you're much more likely to freeze up.

    Limiting your options sounds constraining, but it's really freeing. It shuts out all the noise, and gives you enough space to actually make a decision.

    Then the next question is how to limit your options. The pick-a-body-part method is a good one. I also like categorizing movements by “feeling”, so if the music is saying “earthy”, you pick from your pool of earthy moves.

  2. Nadira, thanks for commenting! And yes, I was even thinking of adding to my review something along the lines of, “bellydance instructors should call out shoulder moves, hand moves, etc.,” but I suspect a lot do — just not the ones I've been to. I also have a vague memory of there being something like this suggestion on Shira's site.

    My best metaphor is probably from writing poetry. When I've tried to write free verse, the result has always been boring, because all that came out what what I intended to write in the first place. (And truth be told, I don't think much of most other people's free verse either!) If I start introducing metre, or a rhyme scheme, suddenly, unexpected things happen. I do this with my students too, and they are also surprised at what they come up with.

    What also surprised me while doing this kind of free dance was how much I was drawn to what felt like potentially “ugly” moves, perhaps moves I'd more associate with modern dance a la Pina Bausch, rather than with bellydance. (I've had no modern training, btw, so inspiration has been purely visual.)

    I like the idea of mood too… I will play with this!

  3. Hi Atisheh,

    Thank you soo much for the fantastic review – I can honestly say this is the most thorough review of my DVD yet! Cudos!!!

    I can only guess it's because you are actually pregnant and “really preparing ” for labor and finding ALL of the ways you can do this!

    What you said —- “The fact that you're not following someone else's count or precise movements, but taking each of the exercises and doing them in a way that stretches and strengthens your muscles in the best way for you, is, I suspect, good practice for labour” ——-

    This is soooo true – Authentic Free-form movement is one of the ONLY ways I have found to simulate what it feels like to be in labor – in labor you need to totally – “LET GO” – Let your body be your guide – Follow your intuition! If you are always “looking outside of yourself” for guidance – then guess what happens in labor? You end of “giving away your power”
    NO-ONE IS INSIDE YOUR BODY BUT YOU – NO-ONE ELSE, NOT YOUR DOCTOR, MIDWIFE, NURSE, DOULA, HUSBAND – NO-ONE KNOWS WHAT YOUR BABY, AND YOUR BODY NEEDS … more than YOU!!!!

    Monitors don't cut it!!!

    I remember how shocked I was with the birth of my first baby – when I went into labor. They hooked me up and left me there – for HOURS! I felt alone and scared – As a dancer I had always controlled my body – IN LABOR YOUR BODY TAKES OVER – That was a rude awakening …I was terrified of letting go of control and letting my body guide me. – I was in real trouble – my first labor lasted 50 hours!

    After I learned to trust my body – through intuitive – free form movement – and ecstatic dance – My second two births were a piece of cake – My second was only 2 hours, and my third only 90 minutes!!

    WHAT WORKED WAS PRACTICING MOVING MY BODY THE WAY “IT WANTED TO MOVE” And releasing control!!!

    For my first birth I had tried everything – prenatal yoga, belly dancing, fitness classes, dance classes, visualization and mind techniques – you name it …

    Nothing prepared me better for labor – AND MOTHERHOOD! Than free-form dance. Also as a MOM – you need to know how to “go with the flow” – Usually nothing goes as planned!

    Let's face it ladies – We need to learn how to follow our Inner Spirit – trust our bodies – and let go of control –

    AND I CAN TELL YOU – FREE-DANCING WILL GET YOU THERE –

    PLUS DANCING WITH YOUR BABY AND KIDS IS A TOTAL BLAST!

    So “Let's Dance Together”!!!!

    Much Love ~

    Jennifer Joy Jimenez 🙂
    http://www.letsdancetogether.net

  4. Jennifer, thanks so much for the comment!

    I'm very happy to have the advice from a woman who's had a few kids! I have to admit that despite the courses (hospital, lamaze), the reading, the videos, the prepping, I'm still pretty scared of labour. Less so than a while ago, but there's quite a bit of fear there. It sounds like “letting go” is actually pretty hard, especially during pain. But I'll work on getting in touch with my intuition!

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