Bellydance has a range of physical and mental health benefits common to many forms of exercise, as well as specifically strengthening muscles in the lower back and pelvic regions which can be problematic for women. So practiced carefully (and by that I mean paying attention to your own body, not pushing yourself to the point of injury) it’s definitely good for you.

Something else that’s good for you is laughter, and I’ve been aware recently of how much of that goes on in my classes. I like to try to have a jovial atmosphere when I teach, I think it helps ease a discipline can sometimes be experienced as frustrating or, particularly for the body conscious, embarrassing. And I like to have a giggle myself!

Laughter’s good for the body too. It helps increase your blood flow, which in turn reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease (which can lead to strokes, heart disease and peripheral arterial damage). It can also help control diabetes, boost your immune system and fight infections; it can ease pain and even reduce allergic responses including relieving hay fever!

And in light of the benefits of laughter, here’s a (non bellydance) video that makes me laugh a lot – feel free to share your ‘funnies’ with me. (Oh – be aware that there’s a bit of strong language in this video)