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October 14, 2010 / ccollinsonjones1

Special needs hip hop

The girls and their new moves

I have encountered my first fitness failure on this adventure: dancing. Until now I’ve loved everything I’ve done. This class I hated.

Now, I’m assured this was a particularly fast class, and not with the usual instructor, but that wasn’t the whole problem. The problem was that I’m incapable of remembering anything without writing it down, which is not very helpful in a dance class.

It was a commercial hip hop class at Frame. I was nervous beforehand and extremely glad to have two brave accomplices in case everyone wore legwarmers and looked all showbiz.

It started well: Everyone was in normal attire and the warm up exercises were deceptively easy to follow. I even managed to keep up. A misleading feeling of competence came over me.

Then we began the routine. As soon as I heard the word ‘routine’ the mental shutters started to come down. It took me straight back to some ill advised university amateur dramatics where, even after weeks of rehearsal, I was prone to clattering off stage in the wrong direction.

So I really, really tried to focus this time, but I just couldn’t keep all the steps in my head. As we layered on more moves I fell behind. As everyone got faster and faster, I missed more and more. As everyone pulled off the perfect booty wiggle, I looked like confused a toddler with a full nappy. I know this because there was a mirror.

Eventually I stopped being able to pay attention at all and had to admit defeat. I left the class early, somewhat downcast. My first failed attempt at something new.

The thing is, it’s not that I can’t move. I don’t just resort to mum-dancing when I go out. I dance ok. I just can’t remember a sequence of steps. Well, not at that pace anyway. There was no time to make anything look good because I was falling over myself to get to the next step. Not cool.

Maybe being able to learn a routine is something that’s programmed in when little girls go to ballet. Unfortunately I wasn’t the sort of little girl who went to ballet. I was the sort of little girl who spent Saturdays knee deep in horse shit.

I came away thinking dancing isn’t for me, but I’ve since been reassured that it was a particularly tough class. I will try again, of course, in the spirit of adventure. And because I have to for this blog.

I still love Frame. It’s a great space with some really interesting classes, from Dirty Dancing workshops to Jane Fonda tributes. So I will be back. I just may have to get really drunk first.

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