There are different ways to use the mind. In Dance Alive, you are guided to use what we call "The Mind of Awareness". The Mind of Awareness incorporates all aspects of your mind: - The ability to perceive and know what is happening - The agility and fluidity to include and welcome the experience - The concentrative power, todirect attention to what is most needed to create synergy and balance, for the whole team, in any given situation.
Expanding your mental range of movement gives you tremendous freedom and power to build a vital body and life.
Mental mobility is developed as you increase your ability to be aware of the whole. This gives the ability to move your mind to see things from all vantage points in the present moment; not to hold onto fixed ideas, identities and interpretations of reality. You gain the freedom tochange your perceptions, beliefs, preconceived ideasand mindsets, and to see the world from your own fresh perspective as well as anyone else’s perspective, and speak anyone else’s language.
Utilizing the mind of awareness is a discipline which requires that you witness what is occurring without judgement (right/wrong, good/bad), or any attempt to change or alter what is occurring based on your reaction.
By developing the ability to observe with clarity and neutrality, you learn how to use your mind to evaluate and direct based on what is most needed to stimulate greater vibrancy and teamplay in any given situation.
Mental mobility is also cultivated through the ability to focus. Dance Alive develops sustained single-pointed, specific focus; holistic, open focus; and the ability to allow the focus to move randomly and erratically. Each of these types of focus serve an important function in life. Dance Alive expands your capacity to utilize your focus in all three ways, and to be able to fluctuate between all of these types of focus with ease at any point in time. This is mental cross-training which enhances both Right- and Left-Brain function, and the integrated teamplay of both hemispheres.
The integrated functioning of the mind, which is trained and cultivated in Dance Alive, allows you to see the whole in any situation; to see the opportunities and open pathways present, that allow you to keep moving towards your goals, and towards the benefit of the whole team.
As human beings, we innately have the ability to allow feeling, which is the movement of energy. However, through repetitive dysfunctional training to suppress, repress, depress, vent or otherwise control feeling, many of us have lost touch with this ability. In Dance Alive, through continued guidance to include all feeling, without judgment or labeling, you increase your capacity to feel. All feelings give you information.With this information you either react (fight, flee or freeze), or you respondas needed by integrating the information and choosing the best possible direction to move in.
Receiving and integrating the information from your feelings requires developing the ability to maintain openness to the intensity of feeling without reacting to or collapsing into the feeling or acting out to discharge it. It also requires allowing feelings to exist and to move and change organically. Training your mind to include feeling, without attempting to change or alter it, is how you can allow feeling to exist.
Allowing feeling builds your intuitive radar tremendously, which is necessary to navigate well in all personal and professional relationships and the whole environment we live in.
The ability to feel without interference is absolutelynecessaryto make clear, committed and responsible choices.
Breath is essential to life. Dance Alive maps out an entire system of breathing which retrains the body to breathe in a manner that relaxes and energizes, cultivating a smooth, easy flow of vital energy.
How we breathe is a direct reflection of how we live and interact with our world. Each inhale reflects how we receive and each exhale reflects how we give. The space between the inhale and the exhale reflects how we contain and the space between the exhale and the inhale reflects how we pause. The steadiness of our breathing pattern reflects the fluidity and continuity of our each and every movement.
Thus, practicing Dance Alive's breathing exercises have tremendousphysical, emotional, mental and spiritual benefits: they generate vitality, a natural flow of emotion, increased concentration, and alignment with your spirit or purpose in life. Each of the 5 Movement Forms has a corresponding breath that accompanies it, as well as corresponding variations.
Our bodies have an unlimited amount of movement within their inherent structures.
You will be guided to: - Expand your awareness of your body from the space within, throughout your entire body and through the space surrounding your body. - Increase your range of motion in all directions, all shapes and all tempos and amounts of intensity; not to be limited by any rhythm, or pattern of movement that is familiar to you. - Interact with others through physical movement, energetic interplay and verbal communication thus buildingvibrant health, greater fluidity and strength and internal communications.
Fluidity is the ability to be responsive and tomove incrementally with grace and precision from one movement to the next. All of nature moves in an organic, fluid manner. Fluidity in the body is the result of connecting one movement to the next and every movement connecting to the whole.
Strength is theability to stabilize, tobuild and maintain greater amounts of resistance, and to endure the pressure required to hold a strong, steady position. To move with physical strength involves precise awareness to be able to maintain tension and re-stabilize with each movement. With strength, a greater level of standing over your own two feet is possible, and the ability to engage with another creates a satisfying challenge.
As you develop greater physical mobility, your body will continually open to greater ranges of movement, articulation, freedom and purpose. As you learn to allow and initiate movement, you are creating new energy pathways throughout your entire system.
In Dance Alive you are trained to be aware, adaptable, encouraging, direct and responsive with yourself and with others. How you relate internally is reflected in how skillful you are relating with others.
It takes tremendous flexibility and internal strength to be able to receive feeling and then be responsive in a way that creates synergy with another. When in class, you are not supposed to know how to relate well; if you already do relate well, your skill will be grown tremendously through this practice of working with many different people. The ability to be agile in relationship gives you the freedom to never feel controlled, manipulated, or limited by others. Instead, you are able to move internally (feelings, thoughts) as you relate to another. The ability to both adapt and not adapt to others when needed and remain open, connected and true to yourself is very satisfying and productive, for it enables you to be increasingly more effective personally and professionally.
In Dance Alive, you are trained how to give and receive guidance with others and how to interact in relaxed, vibrant and creative ways. You are encouraged to expand your capacity to relate in a direct manner as well as be sensitive to the subtle cues that others are giving you. You are trained to verbally communicate what you are doing in the moment while you are moving with others to increase your awareness and build communication skills and rapport. In addition, you are given plenty of opportunity to play, explore and interact in a fun and creative environment that encourages listening to yourself and responding to others, and letting yourself discover in the moment new ways of relating with others.