Dance Goal 9 away in Spring 2018

By Anne Berg, Contributing Writer

      Throughout everyone’s time as a student we have been required to take gym classes to improve our physical education. Of course, we all know that none of them really helped and simply caused more pain than gain. Most of the gym classes I have encountered throughout my education have consisted of little to no physical activity with teachers who get even less exercise than the students. Sure, there were the yearly presidential tests where everyone had to run a mile and do pushups, etc. But those only lasted about two days and we never worked on improving any aspects of physical strength and endurance afterwards. Worse than simply not getting anything from the experience, they were always the worst days of the year as they were never a test of how good you were, rather how bad you had gotten. In my experience gym classes were less about health and something I just had to make it through.

       When I finished high school, I thought I was finally free from mandatory gym classes. That is until I came to Bloomsburg and realized that I had to complete goal 9: healthy living. The last thing I wanted to do was run the mile with a bunch of people I had never met in my life. And sure, I could take one of the health classes that counted for the goal but I really didn’t want to add more homework to my already full plate. So, I put it off all the way until my senior year. And I am so glad I did. Because that is when I discovered Dance 117, also known as Beginner’s Jazz and Ballet, fulfilled goal 9. I’m not going to lie, I was a bit skeptical when signing up. Was I going to have to wear a leotard? Was I going to be the only one who knew nothing about dance? Was this going to be as pointless as all of the other gym classes I had ever taken? But I needed to complete the goal and I needed a class for my schedule so I said what the heck and signed up. And I have not regretted that decision for a second.

     Not only is Dance 117 the best gym class, but it is also the best general education class that I have ever taken. And if that’s not really saying much, it is the one class that never fails to make me happy, even if I am having the worst day. After all, movement produces endorphins and endorphins make you happy. And you definitely. This is not a just mandatory gym class; this is a fitness class that you could take at an actual gym. Every class is started with some serious stretching and even more serious warm ups. And it’s never the same thing day in and day out. The professor, Anthony Cole, really knows how to change things up so you are always getting the best workout possible. And that is just in the first 15 minutes. I can honestly say that this is the only useful physical health class that I have ever taken.
         But it is about more than just the workout you get from it. I had no idea how fun a dance class could be. The majority of the class is based on learning dance moves and combinations for both ballet and jazz. The music selection is great and laughter is basically a requirement. There is no need to worry about not being able to do a movement correctly or being embarrassed when you do something wrong. Everyone else is in the same place that you are. And Professor Cole is always there to help in a hilarious way that makes you forget your insecurities and just have fun. You do not have to be in shape or have any skills as a dancer to participate in this class. Dance 117 is for beginners and everyone makes mistakes and falls down sometimes, and we all laugh about it in the end. The point of the class is not to become a professional dancer, the point is to have fun, learn new things, and just improve from beginning to end. And trust me, nothing gives you more pride than to see how much your ability as a dancer has changed over the course of just one semester.

        I firmly believe that everyone should take this class if they have room in their schedule. Not only has this been most helpful physical education course I have ever come across, but it is also an extremely enjoyable class in its own right. Professor Cole