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Belly Dancing for Fun and Fitness

The crowd turned out to learn how to shimmy.

Belly dancing is a workout of the whole body.

It didn't take the 41 participants that showed up for a belly dancing program at long to learn that.

It also requires focus and using muscles you may not be used to working. But at Monday night's demonstration, the crowd also had fun as nearly everyone learned something new about the art of belly dancing, or Middle Eastern dancing.

Samora -- of Belly Dance by Samora in downtown Decatur -- led the program and commented at one point that the crowd was awfully quiet as she instructed them on certain isolation moves where they would only move their top half or bottom half.

"Some of you look like you're actually enjoying it," she joked.

It wasn't easy, and she understood why.

"We're used to moving our hips when we dance," Samora said, and members of the crowd nodded in agreement.

Samora also performed several dances for the crowd.

"I thought it was an excellent program and I worked out a little bit, too," said participant Katrina Walker.

One woman was inspired to take her learning a step further.

"I am now an aspiring belly dancer," Mary Muse said.

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