David Earl Woodbury
No 28 Changing Lives through Dancing
Friday, July 11th, 2014
How to be Strong in Heart and Strong in Dancing!
Do not be afraid of life. Believe that life is worth living, and your
belief will help create the fact.
— William James (1842-1910) American Philosopher and Psychologist
Why is ballroom, partnership dancing, so wonderful in today’s world? It is because dancing is freedom. Dancing is life. Dancing is fun and exciting. Dancing is the new escape in today’s modern world.
My dream room where I type this message has a glass wall facing Broadway in Santa Monica. During the day I see hundreds of people pass our studio. They are looking down at an absurd piece of plastic in their hands. They have earphone in their ears and they are sometimes talking into a wire.
People walk up and down the street talking with headsets. In my day we thought people who walked talking to themselves were crazy. Now, we are talking to someone, somewhere, to anyone except the people who are around us. For a world that is connected by technology, we are sometimes quite isolated by technology. The new trend is not having a voice mail box on your cell, only using texts to communicate. Wow, what happened here?
To be strong in dancing, you must have a good frame, good posture, a good connection, a sound mind, floor craft and people skills. You can’t send a text or place a cell phone call while you have both arms around someone dancing a Cha Cha or a Tango. While dancing, you are with a real person, moving with them, communicating with them, talking to them. You are in real time, in the moment, in real life. No WIFI connection is a fast as the connection between two people dancing together, moving together, sharing music and the magic of dancing together.
How does dancing make our hearts strong? First, we finally stand up and we’re off our phones, tablets, and desktop computers. We are breathing from deep in our souls and we are listening to music from our hearts, not just our ears. We are sharing our movement with another person surrounded by music that tells us what movements to execute.
Becoming strong in dancing makes us real people who can communicate with others in real time. We grow through our self-esteem, our confidence and our self-image. To be a great dancer means we can move socially around the dance floor, interacting with the ever changing pulse of the crowd. We become pliable, easy to be with, and comfortable in our own skins. We learn the magical language of dance that may be spoken with anyone, anywhere at any time.
Dancing means that we do not use each other as battering rams or punching bags. We do not take out a bad day on our partner, beat each other up, or let our emotions take over our manners and reason. As a man, my privilege is to take care of my lady, to guide her, protect her and present her. A lady’s honor is to follow the man, respond to his leads, and compliment his movements. I wish I could teach a dance class at the United Nations. I would teach harmony and peace through dancing and partnership.
Why am I strong through dancing? Well, it is because I love it. I love learning dancing, performing dancing, teaching dancing and watching dancing. I see the joy it brings to other, the good health and harmony that others experience, and the youthful excitement that others exude through their dancing.
Dancing will make put a spring in your step and a song in your heart. If you feel that you should be gliding around the floor, take the first step of faith and get dancing today! You’ll be happy that you did and you will be a shining light to others.
What a piece of work is man! How noble in reason! How infinite in
faculty! In form, in moving, how express and admirable! In action how
like an angel! In apprehension how like a God!
— William Shakespeare (1564-1616) English Playwright
David Earl Woodbury
Next Week: How to say YES to dancing! It’s sometimes harder than you think!