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Lower-body warm up:

  • Return to squatting position – feet apart – knees bent – body upright.
  • Bend and straighten knees, pushing buttocks out and bringing body slightly forward with a straight back – hands on knees (eight times).
  • Bring feet together and squat eight times.
  • Alternate opening and closing legs while squatting (eight times).

Lower-back warm up:

  • Remain in squatting position – hands on knees.
  • Contract lower back by tucking your buttocks in and under your body and release (eight times).

Shin and calf warm up:

  • Remain in squatting position and lift and lower heels alternatively eight times.
  • Raise and lower toes alternatively eight times

Hamstring and Quadriceps warm-up:

  • Lunge from side to side eight times.
  • Deepen the lunge and slowly bring hands to the floor while lunging (use eight counts).
  • Lunge to the right and hold lunge for eight counts while lifting the toes of the straight leg and raising the heel of the bent leg (eight counts).
  • Change sides.
  • Hold the stretches for eight counts.
  • Lunge to the right again and turn body to face the right.
  • Bend and straighten front knee eight times.
  • Straighten both legs and bend back knee towards the floor and straighten eight times.
  • Return to centre.
  • Change to left and repeat above exercise.


  • Lunge from side to side while slowly straightening the body – head up last.
  • Walk on the spot with feet open for eight counts.
  • Bring feet together and walk on the spot for eight counts.
  • Shake all moveable body parts.

You are now ready to commence your dance activities.

Activity 2:

To move across space in movement sequences: moving!


Are you ready to start moving? As Heritage Day is coming up in September, it would be appropriate to explore African dance and then perform a dance on Heritage Day for the celebrations.

Here are guidelines to assist you in creating your special Heritage Day Dance :

The music

Choose any music with an African ‘feel’.

  • Examples:
  • “Ipi Tombi” Soundtrack
  • “Shosholoza” by Ladysmith Black Mambazo
  • “Danzer” by Anton Goosen and Lucky Dube
  • “Pennywhistle” by Mango Groove
  • “Imagine Africa” by Sean Fren
  • “The Warrior” by Margaret Singana
  • “Hamba Bhekile” by Margaret Singana
  • You are more than welcome to experiment with only percussion or a drum beat instead of the music.
  • Listen attentively to the music.
  • Choose the music you would like to use for your dance.

The rhythm

  • Rhythm is provided for the dancer by musicians playing percussive instruments, by singers, or by a combination of music and song.
  • An African dancer is assessed primarily on his ability to follow the percussive musical rhythm, “to play the drums with his feet” or with whatever part of the body articulates the rhythm.
  • In some cultures, the rhythmic patterns are expressed in foot patterns, in others in contractions of the torso, strong shoulder beats, rapid vibrations or twists of the buttocks, or acrobatic leaps.
  • Rhythm gives the name to the dance steps:
  • “Ikpo Okme”: performers hop from one foot to the other
  • “Ebenebe”: a stamping pattern leads into a cartwheel
  • “Iza”: an upright carriage with high kicks
  • “Nkpopi”: a leaping dance
  • “Etukwa”: the torso inclined to the earth as the feet drum a staccato beat
  • “Nzaukwu Nabi”: a stamping step with sudden pauses
  • “Ubi-Ogazu”: birdlike hops in a circle

Questions & Answers

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Source:  OpenStax, Arts and culture grade 9. OpenStax CNX. Sep 15, 2009 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11067/1.1
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