Wednesday 2:00pm to 3:00pm
Contact: Janet Martin
Phone: 07790 133836
If you’ve always dreamed of dancing like Fred Astaire or Ginger Rogers all it takes is a few tap classes to get you shuffling romantically across the dance floor. But best of all tap is a very sociable hobby which is guaranteed to make you laugh and have fun.
A key ingredient of tap is balance so it’s great for those looking to improve their posture. Many of the steps involve keeping your bodyweight over your feet which means using your deep postural muscles, the muscles that wrap around your middle like a natural girdle. This not only improves posture in your lower back, but also helps you develop a flatter stomach.
Movements include 'winging' - a complicated hop that produces three sounds, 'pick-ups' - where you jump and land on the opposite foot - and 'shuffles' - a step where you move back and forth with the ball of your foot. This combination of moves produces a gentle aerobic workout where the heart is elevated, bringing fresh oxygen to your lungs and tissue. Even better, one hour of tap dancing is thought to burn around 250 calories.
Many of the moves involve lifting arms above the shoulders which strengthens and tones the lower and upper arms. And bottoms also get a good workout thanks to moving continuously back and forth at a fast pace.
Tap dance does require some investment before you book a place in a class. Buying a good pair of tap dancing shoes is vital to ensure that you don’t do any damage to your feet, so make sure you shop around before committing yourself.
Beginner tap classes are friendly affairs, with welcoming teachers able to deal with your initial fears and misgivings. They’ll only push you as hard as you want to go, so don’t worry about being left dazed and confused.
I have been teaching tap at Shrewsbury House since September 2016. The majority of my pupils are of retirement age. We are a small, friendly group and new members will be very welcome. I teach basic steps which build up to small routines danced to old and new music numbers. Some of my pupils are now aiming to take Grade 1 Tap in the summer.