I’d been wanting to check out the hula dancing class at the gym for weeks, but the time of the class never worked with my schedule. Then a holiday came and I was finally able to check it out. I had not had much exposure to hula dancing before then. All I knew was what I had seen on TV and the little introduction a former teaching assistant had done. When I showed up, I was little dismayed to see all the other ladies in the same long, green, floral skirts they had clearly purchased just for this class. After receiving reassurances I would be welcome with my typical gym attire, I entered the studio.
The teacher greeted me and after making small talk with a couple of the ladies, we got started. Keep my knees bent at all times. Check. Arm swaying. Check. Rapid foot movements…Nope. It quickly dawned on me that this wasn’t one of those classes that you could drop in on from time-to-time: you were expected to practice the moves at home, with new moves added each week. I quite literally spun in circles trying to keep up.
During the brief reviews for each set, I was able to catch a little of what was happening. But overall, it was a difficult 45 minutes. I gained a new respect for hula dancing–it’s certainly not “just hip shaking”. All the moves are intentional and represent something. It’s also quite the workout too. I don’t plan to attend again, because it’s definitely not for complete beginners, but I’m glad I stuck it out for the 45 minutes. Time slowed to a crawl, but I was determined not to walk out of the class.
Discomfort is uncomfortable. I battled the feeling of embarrassment and musings of what others in the class thought of me. But over time my focus shifted to making the best of the moment and assuring myself that this would not last forever. It’s worth it to try something, even if it doesn’t work out. The only way to know if something isn’t for you, though, is to try. That means there is a chance you will experience discomfort. Don’t run away from it. Stay with it and see what you can learn.