You really have to maintain regular Isolation practice to keep the precision and flow happening. I can see the difference when i haven’t drilled for a while!
Here are 4 ways that i have found to help with precise and crisp muscle isolations:
1) Awareness of body imbalances
When there is an imbalance in the body it often creates restriction in certain movement, or a general weakness in muscle groups. If you feel pain or experience a feeling of limited movement (which you intuitively know isn’t your ‘normal’) then I would suggest seeing a physio. Corrective exercises help your muscular skeletal system work at its best and this translates into more precise muscular work.
2) A balance of strength, flexibility and stamina
The strength of the muscles determines the power and precision behind the muscular isolations in belly dance.
The size of the isolation is determined by the flexibility of the muscles involved. However if you are flexible without the support of strong muscles, injury can occur.
The stamina to maintain clear powerful locks over a period of time, requires not only strength and flexibility but also overall fitness.
3) Clarity of movement
If you are starting out and putting together muscular combinations, it can be helpful to practice it first with locks (hard contractions), then progress to serpentine movement (soft contractions). You can play “dot to dot” where you map out the exact shapes and lock patterns for clarity, and then work on smoothing them. Know exactly what you are doing!
Start with a slower paced track and get clear on your combination before speeding it up.
4) Consistent practice
You have to basically really enjoy the repetitive nature of drilling muscular isolations to get any good. If you find it boring or it feels like a chore, you just won’t maintain your practice.
Consistent practice means something different to everyone, find what works for you and is achievable for your lifestyle.
Be mindful of your beliefs around your practice. If it’s a belief that creates resistance, then it’s not going to give you the results you want. Beliefs are thoughts you have had over a long period of time. Deliberately choose to have thoughts (or write them down) that will encourage you to practice more.
Music plays a huge part in the enjoyability factor. Find tracks with strong sounds to accent the locks- I find this really
I hope you found these 4 steps helpful! Feel free to share with your students or dance friends 😘