You Can Leave Your Clothes On: Try Exotic Dance

Yeah, I never managed this. But I sure loved trying! (Image by Usien.)

Yeah, I never managed this. But I sure loved trying! (Image by Usien.)

By Alexa Day

A lot of the people in my daylight life don’t know what I do when I’m not on the day job. Every so often, they tell me that something might be outside my comfort zone. I just smile and nod at some of them, but if I’m feeling difficult, I tell others that my comfort zone has its own gravitational field.

With a comfort zone that big, strip dance class was a great fit for me. I tend to think it would be a great fit for a lot of people, if they were willing to slip out of their comfort zones long enough to give it a try. It is a spectacular workout and a great way to meet new people. Plus you’d be learning to dance. It doesn’t get much better than that, does it?

I’ve been to a couple of different types of exotic dance classes. I took a pole dance class a few years ago, and I’ve taken classes without the pole, too. The pole class is the single best upper-body workout I’ve ever had, bar none. Significant effort was necessary to keep from crashing into the pole, assisted by gravity and my own ineptitude. But I was hanging out with a lot of fellow students, and before long we were having a great time, running into the pole, struggling to learn the moves, and getting into the music. We all got a great workout, even if no one managed the fireman turn, and we all rediscovered the inner sex kitten hiding beneath the drudgery of our day-to-day.

As for the classes sans pole, the workout might have been less intense, but the content was definitely designed to amp up the sexy. Through floorwork and the use of props, like the chair for imaginary lap dances or an oversized shirt from home or that hat we’re always being invited to leave on, I found myself on a trip to a fantasy world. Each class was an escape to a place far sexier than the reality I’m stuck with. (Unless I’m writing. When I’m writing, reality is actually pretty hot.) I think the best thing about exotic dance classes without the pole is that it’s easier to practice at home. While it’s my dream to live somewhere with a pole I can practice on, I already have a chair, a shirt, and a hat right here at home.

And I bet you have chairs, shirts, and hats at home, too. Just saying.

This is usually where I start to encounter a little resistance. This isn’t you, some of you are saying. You’re not that sort of person. And I get it.

So you don’t want to be the sort of person who tries new things. I get it. I know a lot of those people. And I won’t judge you for living in a smaller comfort zone.

But I will challenge you. What’s your comfort zone doing for you? Why are you willing to allow your vision of what might happen keep you from the wonderful reality that could happen?

And really, what do you have to lose?

Hit me up in the comments with a note from your comfort zone, and let me know which class you’ve decided on!

**That question, “What do I have to lose?” Well, it’s at the heart of a lot of Alexa Day’s work. It’s the reason Grace Foley decides to help her bestie test an experimental pill in Illicit Impulse. And it’s why Chloe Newton decides to pay an old friend a visit in her upcoming short story, “Turnabout Day.” (That one’s out on August 22.) Check them both out and give your comfort zone a stretch!

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6 thoughts on “You Can Leave Your Clothes On: Try Exotic Dance

  1. While my comfort zone cannot approach your bandwidth, I think this is an excellent idea! I actually took belly dancing because, as a woman of a certain size, I felt “have belly, can dance.” Found it extremely woman empowering! Loved the sense of connecting not just with myself but with generations of women stretching back through to the first woman, Lilith or Eve, reader’s choice. I will have to look into the erotic dance classes ’round here ’cause this sure sounds like fun. Right now, at least, I’m enjoying line dancing at a local fitness center. Thanks for the fun post (they always are–even the serious ones!). Keep dancing, girlfriend!

    • I can promise you one thing about exotic dance class. I have seen what a girl has to do to get a tougher workout than exotic dance, and I do not want to do those things. 🙂 The pole, floor and chair will introduce you to muscles you weren’t previously aware of. Plus lots of exotic bruises. So win win win, right?

  2. Thanks for a great post. I admire your comfort zone! Mine is unpredictable. I took a belly dancing class, too, Denise! I was really enjoying it until the instructor started focusing on getting us to participate in a show, at which point it all became about (for me) doing it right. And not fun.

    • I’m glad you enjoyed the post! Back when I taught belly dance, I hesitated to put on student performances because they often demanded choreography, which I dislike teaching, and because it was hard to offer an option to students who weren’t about performing. I had a few teachers who managed to keep us students off the stage unless we really wanted to be there — definitely a welcome option.

  3. I’m jealous of you all! I love line dancing and have always wanted to try belly dancing. I’m not sure why. My sister took it though and had a ton of fun. She also took ballet (as an adult), and at one point her doctor told her her muscle tone was like an athlete’s.I should look for some local classes.

    • Belly dancing is awesome — I danced for many years and taught for a long while, too, before streamlining my schedule to make room for the writing. I took classes from someone who is not far away from you at all, and she is a great teacher! So I can totally give you a referral, now that I know you’re looking around. 😉

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