Keep Dancing

Rob Dell shares his exciting journey from leading an unhealthy style of life to getting familiar with the world of dance and exercise. Inspiring.

Date added to ADN: Tuesday, Feb 05 2013
Originally Published: Tuesday, Feb 05 2013
By Rob Dell


Health is one of the most precious things that we have next to life itself.

Good health can be attained and maintained with knowledge, education, discipline, moderation, and some common sense. Good health allows us to be able to work, enjoy many activities, prevent illness, help with quicker recovery from surgery, and give a sense of wellbeing.

About eleven years ago I was given a wakeup call, as my health was not too good, and being overweight. I rarely exercised, and could not walk more than two miles without becoming tired, my eating habits were bad, not eating regularly, only one large meal a day, too much red meat, and little, or no fruit.

Following my doctor's advice I immediately stopped drinking, and changed my eating habits. Started eating three regular meals a day supplemented with a variety of fruits. Before I could start exercising my doctor requested that I lose about 20 pounds, and as soon as this was accomplished I joined a local gym and started working out with a personal trainer. I also exercised at home each morning before work doing push ups, crunches, sit-ups, and oblique exercises.

After three years my trainer left the area and I continued to workout at a gym four to five times a week. The problem with this was that I tended to gravitate to those exercises that I was most comfortable with, and ignored a lot of other exercises that I should also have been working on.

Two years ago in early 2011 I started working with a new personal trainer, Nicole, at Pier Avenue Fitness, Hermosa Beach, training twice a week, on core, cardio, strength, flexibility, and diet improvements. Today, I rarely eat any red meat, or processed food, staying with fish, seafood, and vegetable dishes. Over the last ten years I have lost a total of 38 pounds.

In October of 2011 I started taking tango dance classes (at the insistence of my trainer), and after a short time I started having private lessons with Alina, a dance instructor with 20 years dance experience. Then I was asked to perform a tango showcase in Palm Desert the following July, and also compete in American Rhythm at a competition that February.

In 2012 we competed in five competitions in American Rhythm Closed, and Open styles, and Solos. All this requires fitness and good health to be able to compete in over thirty individual dances in one day, plus Solo performances. Solos require more strength than single dances due to moves such as dips, lifts, etc. This has required practicing routines, techniques, and stretching exercises several times a week, and also increasing my workouts to three times a week, putting more emphasis on core, weight training, flexibility, and stretching.

The cardio effects of dancing several times a week has significantly improved my health, including blood pressure, lower cholesterol levels, and reduced weight. Such are the positive effects of dancing my cardiologist now asks, "Are you still dancing?" and at the end of each consultation, tells me to "Keep dancing."

About the Author:

Rob Dell, Argentine Tango dancer and American Rhythm Competitor

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the AccessDance Network. Be aware that imagery is copyrighted and often licensed for use on AccessDance only. Copying of images is strictly prohibited.

smalladnseal.png Contributing Member

Redondo Beach, CA 90278

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