Lebanese Hip Circles

Like much of Lebanese style belly dance, the ‘Lebanese Hip Circle,’ is larger and more dramatic than the basic ‘Hip Circle.’ Let’s first review the more controlled, basic ‘Hip Circle’ on its own before throwing in the drama. Begin with feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent and simply flex both glutes. Notice how this naturally pushes your pelvis slightly forward. Relax your glutes, and notice how your pelvis returns to centre. Repeat this movement and exaggerate it:  squeeeeze your bum cheeks together, pushing your pelvis forward, then release your glutes, tucking your pelvic and sticking your bum slightly out behind you.

Now let’s try moving from side to side. Start in the same position, but this time just flex your left glute. What happens? Your hips naturally slide to the left. Flex your right glute and same story – your hips slide to the right. Try not to allow the flexing of the glute to tilt the pelvis forward but keep the hip moving straight out beside you, from side to side. Now try to exaggerate this movement, flexing one side and then the other, sticking the hip out and feeling a stretch on the same side of your body that has the flexed glute.

Now put that all together. Flex both glutes – pelvis moves forward. Relax the right glute and flex the left glute harder – hips move left. Relax both glutes, moving your hips to the centre, slightly tucking your pelvis in and sticking your bum out. Flex the right glute – hips move right. Squeeze your bum cheeks together, returning the hips to center and pelvis slightly forward to complete the circle. Practice this several times, hitting four distinct points, then smooth it out to form sensual circles.