Sunday, January 10, 2010

What I Love about Irish Dancing

Here is a list of what I love about Irish Step Dancing:
  • Modest dance and modest dress compared to current dance schools such as tap, ballet and jazz. While Irish Dancing does "kick but," there is no "shaking your thing" or polka dot bikinis (recital number of a tots class!). Some judges do not even like it when you put make up on the little girls.
  • You get more time with your child. Unlike other sports, you only sit on the side-lines for a short time while they dance, the rest of the time is spent together. Either as a special mother-daughter/son day or a family outing.
  • Curly hair and dressing up is fun for girls:)
  • Though Irish Dancing has some roots in pagan tradition, modern Irish Step Dancing is influenced by Christianity. There are Christian symbols on some of the dresses. Christian imagery is used in some of the group dances, like in the St. Patrick's Day parade.
  • Our school lets us decided how much we want to be involved and spend. Lessons for us are less then they would be at some other dance studios.
  • While you may shell out for the first pair of shoes or dress, the items retain a lot of their value for resale ( about half the original price ). You use the money from selling the old items to pay down the cost on the next item.
  • The people we have meant are really nice. Great sportsmanship and encouragement. It is a community.
  • As a sport, it gives you a great work out.
  • It is beautiful to watch.
  • For homeschooling, it is a competitive sport completely outside the school system ( at least in America).
  • Getting your first real dress is a great motivation and good practice in delayed gratification.
  • Out of every 8 dancers, 5 will not win a medal or trophy, losing is an important lesson and hard to come by in our "everyone gets a trophy so we don't hurt their self-esteem" age.
  • With hard work and perseverance, you win medals and move up a level.
  • The dancing itself is lots of fun.
  • If you are Irish or Scots-Irish, it passes your cultural heritage down to your children. Experiencing different cultures is wonderful too.
  • It is a sport for everyone - there is no one body type, look, style, etc. There are no scales or pressure to lose weight, at least that is not our experience. You do NOT even have to be Irish. Desperate to fill teams, boys are adored too.

Some downsides:

As far as I see, half the feiseanna ( Irish Dancing Competitions) are on a Sunday. That means we have to go to another church that has a Saturday night service because our home church does not have one. As she gets older, my daughter will compete later in the day and so we will be able to go to the early Sunday service, I hope. You go to a feis as often as you want to, so you determine what feis and the frequency (unless you are on a team). At least here you have a choice!

1 comment:

  1. We love Irish Dancing too. I have a video on my blog of one of my daughters in full costume doing hard shoe. I have 2 girls in college right now both studying dance and irish soft and hard shoe are one of them.

    Found your blog on Adept Serendipity. You have a nice blog.