Nov 11, 2013

Toronto Fun: Groupon Hip Hop Classes @ OIP

OIP Dance Centre Hip Hop Classes

Price: $22 for 16 Hip Hop Classes (worth $200)
Class: Beginner Hip Hop
Instructor: Danny Davalos
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You sign up for one (preferably with a friend) and attend two classes a week for two weeks to make the most of the Groupon (to get your money's worth). There are different instructors at the Hip Hop Classes, and they are treated as "drop ins", so unlike other classes where you progress from class to class and learn choreography which builds from the last class; these classes are almost like "drop ins".

I come in with very casual gym wear (shirt, shorts) whereas others dress more urban:

The class usually begins with a rigorous cardio warmup for the first 20 minutes of the 1 hour hip hop class, and this is followed with learning choreography to the a song.

Each of the instructors have very different styles of music they like to dance to. Some enjoy top 40, while others prefer more old school.

Dance Advice

Courtesy of instructor Danny. 
  • It's about creating muscle memory, not memorizing the steps. Otherwise you concentrate so hard on going through the steps, that is all you are doing, you aren't actually dancing.
  • When going through the moves in hip hop, you have to go all out, hitting each move hard. You can't be timid or shy in hip hop, it doesn't look good. Even if you make a mistake, hit the move hard and it will still look good.
  • Hip hop is street dance, and less about technique and form and more about attitude and swag.
  • Dance in front a of a mirror, so you can see how your body looks. 

I've noticed doing hip hop has improved my cardio endurance. The skills I've learned in picking up and memorizing choreography has transferred to other areas of dance like salsa. In other words, participating in different dance styles has allowed me to build kinaesthetic awareness of my body.

The Groupon:

The Schedule:

Classes take place everyday, the ones in green indicate which ones the "Groupon Classes" qualify for: 

The Studio:

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