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Dance Lessons in London

Chuck and Lori's Travel Blog - Arthur Murray Dance Studio, London
Chuck Wed, 2014-12-03 07:30

For Christmas a couple of years ago I gave Lori a package of a half-dozen dance lessons at our local Arthur Murray studio back home in Alpharetta. We had talked about taking dance lessons--one day--for many years. Way back when we were first married and our televisions only had a couple of dozen channels, we'd sometimes run across the ballroom dance national championships and we'd watch, enthralled. That package of lessons might have been the best Christmas gift I ever thought of.

A couple of years later and we're still dancing. I don't think I ever expected we'd keep at it, but we do. In fact, right until we left for this adventure in June we were still taking multiple lessons a week and performing spotlights and showcases (sort of like recitals). Without regular lessons, we feared we were forgetting our dance skills. But with some occasional practice--including some memorable time on the roof of our apartment building in Valencia--we've actually stayed pretty sharp. And one of the best things about having invested in learning to dance with Arthur Murray is their standardized system of teaching dance.

When we started our lessons a couple of years ago, Mr. Lewis, our instructor, was quick to point out that Arthur Murray teaches dance on a system. It was progressively easy to see how the steps of Waltz and Rumba, for example, were related, and after only a few weeks, this nomadic travel couple had traded in two left feet for some grace and balance. Not that we're fantastic dancers, but we're now comfortable dancing together, even in front of people, and most importantly, we have fun. It's enjoyable. And it's actually good for us.

The health benefits of dancing are surprisingly varied and comprehensive. Take a look at this article, easy to find among many others with a little Googling for "health benefits of dancing". Perhaps nothing you can do other than losing weight (ok, did that) lends you more health benefits, including improved heart condition, better coordination and agility, improved balance, and increased flexibility. Ballroom dancing has even been shown to lessen the risk of memory afflictions like dementia and Alzheimer's. So it's fun, it's social, and it's really, really good for you.

Admittedly we selected our Arthur Murray studio for its convenience to where we lived. But we were fortunate in having selected Arthur Murray for that standardized system. While it's been awesome to learn from great instructors like Mr. Lewis, Miss Martin, Miss White, and Miss Robinson, we have an incurable case of wanderlust. Fortunately for us, we don't have to sacrifice both our travel and dance: Arthur Murray has hundreds of locations worldwide, all teaching on the same system. So when we emailed Miss Martin back home and said we'd like to take lessons while we were in London in November, introductions were made, the London instructors were told what level we were on, and we were scheduled.

We arranged for two private lessons and two group lessons, intending for them all to be simple refreshers before our upcoming trip home on the Queen Mary. Not only did we realize we hadn't forgotten much at all, Zsolt (our "Mr. Lewis of London") and Eszter (our "Miss Martin of London") taught us a couple of new Foxtrot and Swing moves. And we met some of the London ballroom dance crowd: they take their dancing rather serious, by the way.

We're contemplating setting a new goal to blend our passions for travel and dance: visit as many Arthur Murray dance studios as we can.



Chuck and Lori's Travel Blog - Arthur Murray Dance Studio, London
Arthur Murray Dance Studio, London