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A natural pairing

da nces po r t dan c es po r t da n c espor t dancespor t dancespor t dancespor t dancespor t

When you look at the movement of the body according to an athlete’s movements or a dancer’s movements, they are very similar: both prepare for a jump with a bent

By Lise-Anne Talhami, Owner, Ammena Dance Company

dancesport

knee, inhale as they jump and exhale as The relationship between athletics and dance is a continual topic

they come back to the ground. A jump, a

of debate in the world of dance. This topic has most recently been

turn, a sway, the rotation of the hip, and the

publicized “Is dance recognized as a sport to be entered into the

placement of the foot is all the same. The

Olympics?”

amount of endurance and stamina a dancer undergoes in a performance is extreme,

Ballroom dance is one of the main topics of discussion; should

just as any football or hockey professional

ballroom dance be considered a sport to be entered into the

player would exert in a game.

Olympics? In 1997, ballroom dance at a competitive level was recognized by the International Olympic Committee renaming it

I grew up dancing and participating in

DanceSport. DanceSport is classified as a physical activity that has

sports all my life. My feeling is that dance

a high level of difficulty and endurance that is governed by a set

should be recognized as a sport, purely on

of regulations from the WDSF (World DanceSport Federation) that

the amount of exertion, discipline, stamina

overlooks the level of competition and what is necessary to become

and endurance a dancer must have. The

a DanceSport competitor.

level of injury in dance is just as high as in athletics; the level of education and torture

According to Wikipedia the word sport is define as “all forms of

of the body is the same as in athletics. The

physical activity which, through casual or organized participation,

level of competition in the dance world is

aim to use, maintain or improve physical fitness and provide

aggressive and mandates dancers to strive

entertainment to participants... Sports are usually governed by a

to be their best, like athletes.

set of rules and customs”. Dance is a physical activity, whether done casually or professionally. It aims to maintain and improve physical

Martha Graham, an American modern

fitness and provides entertainment to participants and viewers.

dancers and choreographer, said a dancer

Dance is a disciplined art which is governed by a set of rules that have

becomes an “athlete of God” by practicing

been passed down from centuries of educated professional dancers.

dancing. With that said, how would you

Dance is a sport according to Wikipedia’s definition.

answer the question, “Is dance a sport?” AB

The amount of endurance and stamina a dancer undergoes in a performance is extreme, just as any football or hockey professional player would exert in a game. Photo courtesy of Jan Tanjar

ARTSBRIDGE

13

ArtsBridge Spring/Summer 2012  

This issue focuses on relationships between arts and sports.

ArtsBridge Spring/Summer 2012  

This issue focuses on relationships between arts and sports.

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