When I was eight years old, I had to decide between sports and dance due to schedule conflicts. I chose dance, mainly because I felt most free — most like myself — doing timesteps in my tap shoes and pliés at the ballet barre. No matter which class, my body and mind were always challenged, disciplined, focused, and satisfied.
My experience is not unique, as dance, especially dance fitness, is still thriving. Sure, you can burn a bunch of calories in a dance class, but the art form is not simply a total-body workout. Dancing can boost cognitive functions like processing speed, help you form connections with others, and even alleviate your anxiety. Clearly, cutting a rug works to boost your overall wellness.
Here in Philly, you can shake your groove thing at a handful of studios without needing to register or be a member. Whether you’re looking to belly dance, do ballerina twirls, or twerk it out, we’ve rounded up all the places in the city where you can drop-in and dance.
Where: 2423 Frankford Avenue (East Kensington); 98 Bethlehem Pike (Chestnut Hill) Drop-in rate: $18; $10 on Tuesdays only
Created for people who love to dance (regardless of experience or skill level), DanceFit Exertainment aims to transform your workout into a party. No matter if you drop in their Chestnut Hill or East Kensington studio, you’ll get to groove in group classes like Jazz Fit, Zumba, Motown Movement, and Ballet BarreFit.
This excerpt originally appeared in Philadelphia Magazine's Be Well Philly in October 2019