Is it all a reflex — or some kind of exercise?
It’s not necessarily reflex, because in the beginning, it was instinct. You have that belly dancer who has her dance around herself with the hips pointing in every direction — just trying to get in and out. But when you get into the rhythm of it, it’s a lot easier. But I have to be very careful, because I just can’t get in there.
Does the process of breathing make any difference?
The more breaths you take, the more you move your hips like a stomach dancer. But you keep the muscles tight.
Are there any other muscles that could improve your dance?
The hip flexors — they’re the ones that stretch and tighten. A lot of people are thinking that the knees are part of the hip flexors. But the hips don’t come out.
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Do your muscles get sore from doing moves?
I do get sore, but maybe not the knee. But I can’t do that many hip rolls.
How do you avoid knee pain?
My leg is very strong, right? I just lift the knee high enough to be able to bend it. I do an extra couple of turns in each step to make sure it stays in properly so the pain doesn’t come out.
What about sitting with your legs crossed?
You do try to get to a point in the posture where you can bend the knee as far as you can. But if you’re sitting with your legs crossed, the knee is going to be a little more flexed. So you’re not gonna bend your knee as far as you could otherwise.
Do you enjoy ballet?
I’m definitely not a dancer. I do something like 150 ballet classes a year, and at the end of it, I’m just like — What are I doing? Dancing isn’t my goal.
You don’t want to have to sell yourself to anybody; you just want to be dancing.
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