Bharatanatyam – what is it?
One of the oldest and most famous dance forms in India is Bharatnatyam. Classical dances are considered to be derived from it. Sudhir Attam was the previous name for Bharatnatyam. Bharatnatyam dance originated in Tamil Nadu almost 2000 years ago. The dancers’ astounding footwork and impressive gestures soothe the viewers.
Bharatanatyam’s brief history
It is believed by the legends and many others that Bharatnatyam dance was revealed by Lord Brahma to Bharata, who encoded the dance form in Natya Shastra. Bharatnatyam includes nrita, nritya and nattya. Nrita includes the pure dance, the movements and gestures of hand and foot. Nritya includes the expressions and Nattya includes the play. The dancers are accompanied by music, a singer, and a guru who directs the performance and instructs the dancers.
Bharatnatyam is a classical dance form that is beneficial in many ways. It offers many health benefits. Across the country, people admire classical dance forms such as Kathak, Kuchipudi, Odissi, Manipuri and Bharatnatyam. Classical dances have made a name for themselves not only in India but also abroad due to their positive effects on the body. Below are some of the benefits of Bharatnatyam.
Mudras are an important part of Bharatnatyam. Different parts of the body generate them and they improve flexibility. In Bharatnatyam, expressions and gestures are used to convey emotions and messages. Mudras and expressions help to speak to the audience through dance and improve flexibility.
Like various other dance forms, Bharatnatyam also has many movements that make the muscles strong. Sometimes these movements are strenuous, and the postures need to be held for a few seconds. Bharatnatyam is no less than yoga or gymnastics, so a few hours of practice and movement of the limbs will help increase stamina.
The Bharatnatyam dance incorporates a variety of postures, poses, and movements. Balance is improved through different body movements called Karanas. Standing on one foot for a few seconds can improve balance, for example. Yoga and Bharatnatyam both benefit the body.
Maintains a healthy heart
You can keep your heart healthy by dancing. It circulates blood faster and pumps it. As with many other dance forms, Bharatnatyam requires a lot of energy and ultimately increases blood circulation. Fitness and dance go hand in hand.
When dancing Bharatnatyam, one must remember the mudras, karanas and hastas in order to perform them well. It requires a lot of concentration and attention to remember all these properly. A dancer has to remember various movements, steps, the rhythm, the beat and the expression during the performance. Ultimately, Bharatnatyam helps in improving mental faculties, concentration and mental alertness.
Other benefits of learning Bharatanatayam dance include
Bharatnatyam requires a lot of facial expressions. This involves moving the eyes, eyebrows, neck and lips, which strengthens the muscles. The facial tissues are strengthened by the constant movement of the facial muscles. Different expressions are used to represent different emotions such as sadness, anger, happiness, etc. Bharatnatyam dancers have glowing skin and graceful eyes. The eye movements help in strengthening the eye muscles.