International Women's Day 2018

It's international women's day and I wanted to share the power and integrity of some of the wonderful women I dance with regularly. Nothing makes my more proud of the work I do than the people I see every week who reveal their humanity and vulnerability in hopes of gaining strength as a collective...

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My motto is to be Flexible, Spontaneous and Positive. Flexible because, hour to hour, Parkinson’s may stop me doing something and I need to accept that and do something different. Spontaneous, because I never know when it might be the right time to grab the moment and do any one of the million things I love doing and can do. Positive, because the world, even living with Parkinson’s, is a wonderful place with caring, inspiring friends and family; and complete strangers who offer help without question when I need it. All of these things lead me to dancing and with Danielle I have found that a flexible, spontaneous and positive attitude is nurtured by all that have decided to come to dance, and enjoy the inspiring possibilities that dancing can bring.
— Angie, dancer
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Life has often battered with me setbacks. Each time I was knocked down I got up and brushed myself off. Negativity has no place in my life. I wake up positive and I know I will have a good day because anything less than this is not in my mindset.

My motivation is planting seeds and watching them grow and I grow with them. I walk around the Wetlands and listen to the wildlife chattering in the reeds. What a privilege. My greatest joy of all is dancing!

Dancing with Parkinson’s classes unleashes a powerful creative force in me. Learning new things, moving joyfully about, having fun, laughing and mastering creative ideas which I never thought possible! Our facilitator Danielle Teale is an inspiration and extremely talented. She brings out the best in me. I leave the class feeling empowered with wings on my heels! There is no better feeling in the world!
— Elaine, dancer
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One by one all the activities I used to rely on to keep me sane have slipped away. I was in a kind of limbo of self-pity but then I heard about dance for Parkinson’s. It isn’t just exercise it is creative and wonderful. I live alone where the problems can get out of all proportion. Sometimes the thought of even getting to a class take discipline, but on arrival the warm, supportive greeting from Danielle and the volunteers, not to mention the other participants, cradles you, and protects you somehow. You go home feeling positive every time, any other exercise group would be a compromise in comparison to what I get out of these classes. I still get very sad and frustrated, but if it wasn’t for the dance I would have given up altogether.
— Marianne, dancer
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Being told that the best response to Parkinson’s is to stay active, it’s obvious there’s not a more pleasurable way to do that than dancing. Add live music, wonderful company and laughter and it just gets better and better.

As a woman, I believe that my dancing experience is never a competition but always a collaboration. Being active could be uninspired routine exercise, but dancing with Danielle means it is never about that. Therefore dancing as a way to stay active is inspiring me to keep it up and is its own motivation.
— Myra, dancer