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10 minute band workout

Notes:  Don’t forget to do a brief warm up that explores your range of motion in all major joints: walking in place with slow shoulder rolls, a big hip circle, etc.  You’ll also want to allow some time for basic stretches, including hips, back, shoulders, and hamstrings.

This workout is just a guide, with ideas of exercises that alternate upper and lower body so you don’t get too fatigued, as well as creating a “flow” to maximize your time.  Have fun creating your own flow out of your favorites, or adding or subtracting exercises to fit your time frame.  Just make sure you are working both sides of every muscle (ex. Biceps AND triceps) so that you stay balanced.  If you have more time, do the circuit twice!

Always listen to your body.  Participation in any exercise program is at your own risk, so if something doesn’t feel right, modify it, or skip it!  This is your workout, after all.  Talk to your doctor if you feel joint pain or strains beyond normal muscle fatigue.

  1. Start with band under both feet. Two steps right, two rows (keep wrists straight!) Repeat to left. (5 to each side)
  1. Keep weight in your heels and sit back.(2 sets of 10) You can add a twist in the second set.
  1. Bicep curls. Elbows stay in toward your body.(2 sets of 10)
  1. Drop one side of band. Shoulder raise R side, then crossing your body. Then switch to L. (one set of 10 each)
  1. Lunges with upper back pull – band in front of you, held shoulder width apart. Squeeze your shoulder blades together as you pull your hands back. (one set of 10 each side). Make sure your toes are pointing in the same direction, and you are coming straight down.
  1. A little Cardio! Jump ups. Hands to floor, then knees, then air (or calf raises). (10 total, stay down on last)
  2. Elbows under shoulders, pull your abs in, nice straight back! Hold for 20.
  3. Pushups (one set of 10) – can do these off of a wall, or from all fours, knees, or plank. You can also start with a yoga ball or sturdy bench under your legs – just leave a clear space in case you slip off!
  4. From all fours, back extensions (elbow to knee) (one set each side)
  5. Tricep pushups seated with hands behind you – or “dip” from a sturdy chair or stair (2 sets of 10)
  6. Roll down. 20 straight crunches.
  7. Reverse crunches or toe taps (20)
  8. Knees in to chest. Roll side to side (10 each side)
  9. side crunches, 20 each side
  10. Bridge, pulse up with glutes (20)
  11. Roll up to squatting, nice slow roll up to standing to finish.

Feb 2015 – All About the Love

“Dare to love yourself as if you were a rainbow with gold at both ends.” – Aberjhani


Thanks to all who came out to dance and support dancers this past Saturday at the Anti-Valentine Hafla, hosted by the wonderful Angie Mitchell.  This Hafla (belly dance party) was anything but “Anti-“, filled with captivating, original performances by students and professionals alike, and a fantastic, responsive audience sharing our love of the dance.  I was thrilled to finally perform my “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Firiend” piece before so many friendly faces, and it was a big hit.  (If you haven’t gotten a chance yet, you can find my special “Making of…” article here.

Looking for something fun to do for Valentine’s Day tomorrow night?  I will be performing at Tamarind Savoring India, 2101 Greentree Road, 15220 Saturday Feb 14 6:30-9:30 p.m. Enjoy live middle eastern music by Rich Ermlick and Harvey, and bellydance by Husna, Amythest and myself while sampling delicious Indian food.  No reservations needed!  Bring a date, a friend, or your family.

Cold weather have you down?  Research has shown that regular exercise and spending time with friends can help ease those winter blues.  Do both by grabbing a friend and joining me on Tuesdays at 4:45 for belly dance fitness at CMU’s University Center.   If toning muscle is more your goal, my Fox Chapel body sculpt classes are starting again soon, as well.  Register at, or for more info.

Notice something NEW this month?  I spent some time getting to know your names a little better, editing your profile in my list so that I could address you a little more personally.  If I spelled your first name wrong,  your greeting still says, “friend” or you have a different preference, you can edit your Subscriber Preferences by clicking the Mail Chimp link below.

Hope to see you dancing soon!


Small Business Saturday – Nov. 30, 2013

Small Business Saturday is also my birthday this year – How cool is that?

While you are contemplating, here are five ways you can support my own small business, give me a happy birthday, and feel good for yourself – all in one!

1. Sign up for Jinglethon!  Nov. 30 is the last day of the Thanksgiving special, 2 tickets for $30.  That means you can share the fun with a friend and save enough money to go out for hot chocolate and cookies afterwards.  Part of the proceeds goes to programming for local cancer survivors, so you can feel good about that too.

2. Join me at Alba Fitness!  Monday Nights – 7:30 pm, Monroeville (just a block away from CCAC Boyce) Class will be held Dec. 9, 16, and 30, and are a great opportunity to work off holiday stress and stiffness with some soft and sexy ab work to great beats.  Alba Fitness offers class cards – 6 classes for $25 that make great gifts.  Get an extra one as a stocking stuffer and spend time with a good friend.

3. Book a show!  Limited bookings are still available for December, January and February parties, and priority booking is already available for spring and summer weddings, parties and special events.  Don’t stress over entertainment for your big event last minute when you can get first pick of dates before 2014 even hits, and win big when I create memorable moments for you and your guests.  Find out how I can dazzle at your event by emailing .  Mention “Small Business Saturday” and get 10% off any 2014 show if you book it by Dec. 31.

4.  Cheer me on!  “Like” Morgiana’s Dance or Moquette Volante on Facebook.  If you already have, invite a few friends to do likewise.  Leave a comment if you particularly liked a recent show.  Share a photo or two.

5. Sign up for my newsletter, and keep in touch.  I am always open to new ideas and insights.

Thank you for your support!


Belly Dance and Fitness – Overview

“Belly Dance” is a broad term referring to various styles of Middle Eastern Dance, including Arabic, Egyptian Cabaret, American Tribal, and Turkish, just to name a few.  Each of these styles is characterized by isolations of muscle groups as well as the focus on movement from the core rather than from the limbs as in most European dance styles.

While belly dance in the East seems to have existed in some form or other since before recorded history it made its first appearance in America in 1893.  Audiences at the Chicago World’s Fair thrilled at Little Egypt’s unique and exotic dance performances.  The popularity of the art spread throughout the 20th century inspiring not only Hollywood and Vaudeville, but modern dance pioneers such as Ruth St. Denis and Isadora Duncan as well.

Popularity of belly dance for fitness soared in the 1970’s with the release of an album by Turkish dancer Ozel Turkbas, which included an instructional booklet.  Women across the United States sought classes at YWCAs and private studios alike, finding a low impact cardio workout with fun, sensual movements that celebrated camaraderie among classmates.

Today, men as well as women across the globe are learning to belly dance, enjoying benefits such as increased body confidence, better posture, toned muscles, and increased agility, just to name a few.

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