Thanks To SharQui – Joanne’s Story
My name is Joanne Domenici, and I have been involved in the Belly Dance world since 1974, although I did not start teaching until 2006. Always interested in fitness as well as dance, I began teaching Belly Dance at the gym I belonged to, and wanted desperately to merge the two into a single style. My classes were always well attended, but I couldn’t help but think there was a better way to teach the classes I so enjoyed.
In 2008, I decided to get certified as a group fitness instructor, which I did through AFAA; that same year I attended Rakkasah west and passed by Oreet’s booth. I wondered if perhaps she might be a good connection, but I never actually met her, although I did buy a continuous movement CD from her that I happily used in my ongoing classes. The following year, I made sure I found her, and when we chatted, I knew that she was the person I was looking for to help me implement my original vision, as she had already done it! I made sure I was in her first west coast workshop in the summer of 2009 and became certified as a SharQui instructor.
The rest is history! I continue to teach at the same gym, but using the SharQui format. I have come to value Oreet not only as a friend, but also as a mentor, a superb teacher, and an extraordinary dancer. SharQui – The bellydance workout® has done so much for me as well as my students! I have seen them develop from having “two left feet” into excellent dancers, including people who have never danced in their lives. I have seen others grow in their love of themselves as creative, independent, and expressive spirits. It has been a joy to be able to use the SharQui vehicle to support students in their growth as healthy and happy human beings.
Above all, however, is my never-ending concern for health and fitness. As I reach my “senior” years, it becomes more and more important to stay “young” and in shape, and to help my students do the same. I recently received some tangible proof that SharQui is helping me do just that! My doctor sent me for a bone density scan, and I was just a little hesitant; I know I am in a high risk group for losing bone mass. However, I was more than pleasantly surprised when my reading for my lower spine came back in the normal range. Osteoporosis runs in my family, and I had had a previous scan that warned me that I was on the verge of succumbing to this condition. I can only attribute this normal reading to teaching SharQui – The bellydance workout®, as I have not changed anything else substantially in my workout routine. All of the twisting plus the attention to posture surely contributed to this vast improvement. I couldn’t be happier and am so thankful for that meeting with Oreet at Rakkasah in 2009. Here’s to teaching many more years as a SharQui instructor! Many, many thanks to Oreet for everything she has done for me!