It’s early morning, I have walked down the road from the hotel to the stadium in the sunshine. It’s already feeling like its going to be a hot one and it’s only 8.30. Stepping into the small auditorium already filled with ladies waiting patiently, the atmosphere is palpable. Nerves, excitement, sweaty palms, a mixture of intensity and anxiousness for the beginning of the unknown dance experience ahead.

Why did I sign up to the 9 hr boot camp? It had been 18 months since my last Isolo trip to New York trip in which my mind, eyes and body were opened to the incomparable scene of the New York footwork class. I felt my body go into a slight shock as it got put through its paces. Walking around the city to three or four different classes & privates a day with no down time for a solid 2 weeks. I managed to sneak in rest periods when I sat myself down in a theater to watch a Broadway show otherwise, it was go go go.

At first, I was terrified of going to New York by myself. My dance background is Ballroom/Latin so I come from a pretty strong partner dancing foundation, therefore, solo dancing has always been my challenge – much more thinking involved….but did I LOVE the footwork classes that were on offer, oh yes and I attended as many as I could in that period.

So to challenge myself again by signing up to the 9 hr Karel Flores bootcamp was a treat. Having the opportunity to learn from her in my own country without the expense of travelling overseas was a MUST I couldn’t pass it up. I learnt so much in the 9 hours, not just from what she taught us to do with our bodies and chorey (those damn jazz rolls, Oh I earned those bruises! Floor work dancers, much respect!!) but little encouraging tid bits about her training regime and performance experience. This left me inspired. I was determined and encouraged to see it through to the end. A finale of performing in front of a large audience of peers, students and the public alongside one of my dance idols.

My body was pushed out of it’s comfort zone, moving in new and foreign ways. My mind questioning my ability to get on stage and “fake it till you make it”. By no means was it a “terrific” performance on my behalf but it gave me a new found respect not only for my female peers who also showed resilience and inspiring professionalism putting in extra training when they weren’t teaching/performing/gigging themselves but it also reminded me of the courage our students muster when they accept the challenge to learn our pieces of choreography.

Was it hard? Abso fricken lutey!
Rewarding? 100%
Did I learn some important lessons about myself ? Totally, it showed me sides of my character that I didn’t think I had and showed me that I am one lucky girl with a wonderful,encouraging, got your back no matter what support team..

What have you done, or want do, that will push you past your comfort zone and require the  courage train to chug into the station?

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