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Several years ago, Kristina Moseley was frustrated.  Back injuries prevented her from doing traditional workouts, but she needed to lose weight.  A belly dancing DVD changed her life.

“It’s kind of like riding a bike,” she says of trying the dance for the first time, “you try and try and some things you just aren’t getting and then all of a sudden you get it and you’re like – why was this so hard?!?”

That five dollar purchase helped Kristina drop 65 pounds, and now she teaches other people how to belly dance.  Even people like us!  She says the key is to relax and have fun.  That’s easier said than done in the beginning.  We realize that although the movements look simple, they require a lot of control.

First, Kristina teaches us “snake arms” – a move that looks a lot like it sounds.  “It works all your muscles from your shoulders down to your fingertips.”

“The camel” is next – and it engages the entire body.  “You want to roll up, lean back and roll down,” Kristina shows us.  “As you’re rolling down you should feel all of these muscles in your core working to control everything, going down one vertebra at a time…”

The core – and gluts have to work to pull off the hip lift.  We’re shocked at how much our muscles are starting to burn, but Kristina’s not.  “It’s low impact and I call it kind of like strength training from the inside out.”

You could say we really start “shaking things up” with the “Egyptian shimmy” and once we start getting the hang of things, we can appreciate what a great workout belly dance can be.  Plus – it’s FUN!

“You know the more you do it and get comfortable you start to find your own style, it’s about personality,” Kristina says with a smile, “just let it go through you.  It’s an emotional experience as well as a good workout.”

If you’re interested in belly dance lessons, contact Kristina:   http://www.malaikamoves.com/classes.html

You can see an amazing belly dance performance this weekend:

Midwest Gala of Bellydance
Saturday April 20 at 7:30 p.m.
Hoyt Sherman PlaceProceeds Benefit Des Moines Furry Friends Animal Refuge.