Frequently Asked Questions

If you have any questions not answered here, contact us and we'd love to help.
I don’t know how to dance. I’m really shy. I have very little experience – should I still come to class?

Yes you should – most definitely! You will build up experience by going to classes. This is as much your class as it is my own. It is the perfect opportunity for you to experiment, practice, explore and try out something new or something a little beyond your comfort zone.

So, how difficult is it?

Like any other dance style, belly dancing will take some time to master. Each student is unique and so everyone progresses at different rates. It depends on many factors including your muscle memory, flexibility, natural rhythm, intention, age, level of fitness, body awareness, past injuries, any previous dance experience, how often you practice outside the classroom, even your level of confidence. One student may find shimmies easier to learn while another student will struggle with it. That’s quite normal because we’re all built differently to one another. I find students who practice more frequently outside of class will progress faster than students who only practice once a week during class because they are building up their muscle memory – remember ‘practice makes permanent’. Often I find that a student with no belly dance experience will start to feel comfortable with the dance moves after about a year of regular dance practice.

I don’t know anyone in class, is it ok to come to class on my own?

Belly dancing is one of the few dance styles where you don’t need a partner. You don’t have to bring anyone with you. In fact, belly dancing is a very social activity where you meet new friends by going to class.

What should I wear?

In a nutshell, wear something you feel super comfy in. Remember, we’ll be dancing and moving around so I would recommend things like leggings, yoga pants, trackies, or shorts. No jeans as they’re too restrictive or long skirts as it’s hard to see what your feet are doing.

Singlets and T-shirts are perfect. In the cooler months, it’s a good idea to bring along a cardigan, hoodie or simply wear an extra layer until we start to warm up. Don’t worry too much about dance shoes, you can dance bare foot if you like, or bring along jiffies, dance slippers, toe thongs or foot undies (yes, they exist alright!)

What’s this “coin belt/hip scarf” business about?

In the class room, dancers often wear ‘something’ on their hips – either a coin belt, hip scarf (with coins and/beading) or anything pretty and colourful. This makes it easier to see what your hips are doing – are they dropping or lifting, sliding left, twisting, etc. While it’s not compulsory, I find that bringing your awareness to your hips is helpful when learning new movements. And of course, don’t you feel fabulous when you’re wearing something pretty? I know I do.

Where can I get a hip scarf from?

You can simple bring a scarf from home to wrap around your hips, or make one from some fabric that caught your attention (you can cut/fold it into a really big triangle to tie around your hips). If you want to purchase something more intricate, fancier or handmade, you can visit my favourite local belly dance store Amera’s Palace located in Marrickville. You can also find many mass produced styles online, especially on Ebay.

When do you have classes?

Please check out our Class Timetable for group classes, or contact us for Semi-Private and Private classes.

How long is each class?

Each class is only 1 hour. On special occasions, we may extend the class to 2 hours, but only if we are rehearsing for a performance or due to some other event. Extended class times will be specified in our Class Timetable.

How much does it cost?

Casual drop-in classes are $20 per person per 1 hour class.
10 Class Pass is $150 for 10 x 1 hour classes, valid for 6 months from the date of purchase. The pass can be used for any scheduled class within those 6 months. Any unused classes are forfeited and non-refundable once the pass expires. Purchase a 10 Class Pass here.

Where do you have classes?

Most of our group classes are held at a studio around Hurstville/Peakhurst/Kogarah. We are currently moving main studios and are teaching from a private space in Hurstville, please contact us for details. More details about our main location here. Some classes may be held at a private studio in Hurstville, please contact us for details.

Do I have to perform in public?

No, performing is not compulsory. Performing for a public audience is always a choice and only if you feel comfortable enough to do so. There are several opportunities for students to perform choreographies or projects that we have worked on throughout the year. These include school concerts, dance festivals, community events, cultural festivals or parades. It’s a fun experience where you get to dress up and show off what you have learnt with the friends you have met in class.

© Shimmy Juju Belly Dance

Jessica Belly Dance