Sight, sound, taste, touch, and smell are our five senses and essential parts of our life … but looking at them as dancers, are we engaging them fully? Each sense offers a different avenue to rich and meaningful experiences, and each represents a unique way of exploring the world around us. Dance is more than just a physical feeling – it can stimulate our hearing and sight, while soft fabrics might stimulate our sense of touch and even sweat or perfumes to excite our sense of smell. Dance is highly a sensory experience. We are engaging our eyes, ears, and physical senses as we move to the rhythm and flow of music.
To engage your sense of sight, you might change up the environment where you dance, the surroundings and lighting, or the dance itself. You could experiment with different genres of music to challenge your body to respond to a variety of beats and tempos. Engage your sense of touch by really feeling the texture of the floor and the pole, or the way that your body connects with your partner or the space around you. Experiment with scented candles, essential oils, or incense to find the aromas that best complement your dance experience. And finally, while it may not seem like the obvious sense to engage, taste is relevant. Nourishing your body with delicious and healthy foods before and after dancing can enhance your energy levels and create positive associations with your dance practice.
What Gives You Pleasure?
Our senses are intimately entwined with our emotions. Experiencing sensations from one or more senses can have an emotional impact. In exploring what brings us pleasure, we can connect with our bodies, recognize our desires, and embrace our true selves. Additionally, through this exploration, we can learn to identify our pleasure triggers and use them for future enjoyment.
Where Do You Feel Your Emotions?
Have you ever given thought to where in your body you feel your emotions? Nervousness might make our stomach flutter, while excitement might increase our heart rates. Identifying how and where we feel our emotions can connect us to our embodied selves, help us develop self-awareness, and contribute to our confidence and sense of autonomy.
Being in Your Body
Pole dance and sensual movement are powerful ways of being present in our bodies, connecting with ourselves, and exploring sensuality. With every movement, we learn to appreciate our bodies, celebrate our strengths, and embrace our natural sensuality. We grow in our confidence and self-awareness, as well as a sense of pleasure and fulfillment.
Taking away some of our senses can be another way to ignite them. Dancing blindfolded could be an exciting way to challenge your sense of sight, which is typically our most relied upon sense when dancing. By removing visual cues, you’ll need to rely on your other senses, as well as your intuition, to guide your movements. Start slow with simple movements and gradually increase the complexity of your dance. This will allow you to build confidence and develop a stronger connection with your body in the absence of sight.
Dancing is often driven by the beat and melody of music. But what if you were to dance without the guidance of sound? Or with no sounds at all if you wear earplugs? What happens if you only rely on your body’s natural sense of rhythm and timing
By limiting our senses our other senses are often heightened, resulting in a new and peculiar experience of the world. Such experiences can enliven us, engaging our imagination, and renewing our sense of self.
Earthly Delights, Hedonism, and Base Desires
Our bodies and senses are pathways to spirituality and not just instruments for satisfying our base cravings. Through pole dance and sensual movement, we can explore and celebrate the wonder and beauty of the world around us. We come to appreciate the beauty of our bodies and the world, and connect with our deeper spiritual selves.
Pole dance and sensual movement can ignite our senses, connect us to our embodied selves, and help us find pleasure, spirituality and fulfilling expression. By exploring each sense, taking time for ourselves, and embracing our natural sensuality, we connect with ourselves and the world, igniting our senses and celebrating the beauty and joy of our lived experience.