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  • Amelia Millward

Aren't Our Bodies Amazing?

Updated: Sep 6, 2021

Hello Movers!

This week is the National Honor Society for Dance Arts Love Your Body Week! A time to remember all the incredible things the human body allows us to do, and to show support for ALL the lives inside those bodies; something BodyKinect is passionate about.

I know you know this, but sometimes it can be hard to love your body. Maybe the media is telling you your body is not the right shape, size, or color; maybe your body is differently-abled and living in a world built for one kind of ability, or maybe you’re living in a body that just doesn’t reflect who you are inside. The research being conducted on body satisfaction shows that negative self-perception is more common than the flu. 50% of adult women were unhappy with their bodies, a French study tells us that 85% of adult males reported frequent body checking and dissatisfaction in their muscularity, 25% male and 80% female adolescents had body image concerns, and 70% of transgendered and non-binary youth report feeling dissatisfied with and dissociated from their bodies.

I don’t give you these statistics to scare you or to make you sad, but to show you that you really are not alone. It is so common these days to turn on a movie or be online shopping (not-so-guilty pleasure) and see insanely attractive people with impossibly perfect bodies, and then look on social media and be bombarded with “50 ways to lose 700 lbs. in 5 minutes”, or “This is the ONLY makeup that can cover that scar that no one notices”. It is so easy to think life would be easier if you looked different. It’s a lot more work to say, my body is amazing. It took me years until I was able to foster a positive relationship with my body and it’s a relationship I will always be working on. It wasn’t until I had a teacher who showed me that my body wasn’t made to be seen, but that it was made to DO (Shout out to the incomparable B.H.)!

How do we fix that? As dancers, as parents, as teachers, as researchers?

I could go on and on, giving you study after study with facts and figures, but I’ll leave that to the resources page.

In my opinion? It’s the 3 A’s.

Acknowledgement, Acceptance, Appreciation.

Acknowledgement:

I acknowledge that this body is not perfect, but no body is. There will always be something that I want to be different.

Acceptance:

I accept that this is the body I am in right now. And no matter how long I stare at it, it’s not going to change today.

Appreciation:

I appreciate what this body lets me do. Everything I do, every second of the day, I do because of this body.

You know what ya’ll… my thighs touch. They jiggle when I walk, they have cellulite, stretch marks and scars, and they have worn through every pair of pants I’ve ever owned. But my quadriceps and hamstrings LET me walk. They give me power to leap, stability to balance, and padding to roll around on the floor. And if I do say so myself, they are pretty dang strong.

There’s one more thing that makes this week special.

This week is also Transgender Awareness Week.

Being able to love your body is hard enough, but what if your body didn’t match your gender? According to a study done by GLSEN (the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network), 75% of transgender and non-binary youth feel unsafe in school and activities.

Dance has always been something that has made me feel safe, and the thought that it could be anything but that for someone else breaks my heart. So, this week when you are finding ways to celebrate your own body, don’t forget to help those around you to feel safe and loved in theirs.

Maybe take a few extra minutes to do this on Friday (Nov. 20th) Transgender Remembrance Day to honor those whose are no longer dancing with us.

In the resources page, you can find articles, research and links to help you love yourself and others!

Below are the links to NHSDA Love Your Body Week and the Trevor Projects Guide to Being a Trans Ally.

Aren’t our bodies amazing??

Keep Kinected,

Amelia

Hello Movers!

This week is the National Honor Society for Dance Arts Love Your Body Week! A time to remember all the incredible things the human body allows us to do, and to show support for ALL the lives inside those bodies; something BodyKinect is passionate about.

I know you know this, but sometimes it can be hard to love your body. Maybe the media is telling you your body is not the right shape, size, or color; maybe your body is differently abled and living in a world built for one kind of ability, or maybe you’re living in a body that just doesn’t reflect who you are inside. The research being conducted on body satisfaction shows that negative self-perception is more common than the flu. 50% of adult women were unhappy with their bodies, a French study tells us that 85% of adult males reported frequent body checking and dissatisfaction in their muscularity, 25% male and 80% female adolescents had body image concerns, and 70% of transgendered and non-binary youth report feeling dissatisfied with and dissociated from their bodies.

I don’t give you these statistics to scare you or to make you sad, but to show you that you really are not alone. It is so common these days to turn on a movie or be online shopping (not-so-guilty pleasure) and see insanely attractive people with impossibly perfect bodies, and then look on social media and be bombarded with “50 ways to lose 700 lbs. in 5 minutes”, or “This is the ONLY makeup that can cover that scar that no one notices”. It is so easy to think life would be easier if you looked different. It’s a lot more work to say, my body is amazing. It took me years until I was able to foster a positive relationship with my body and it’s a relationship I will always be working on. It wasn’t until I had a teacher who showed me that my body wasn’t made to be seen, but that it was made to DO (Shout out to the incomparable B.H.) !

How do we fix that? As dancers, as parents, as teachers, as researchers?

I could go on and on, giving you study after study with facts and figures, but I’ll leave that to the resources page.

In my opinion? It’s the 3 A’s.

Acknowledgement, Acceptance, Appreciation.

Acknowledgement:

I acknowledge that this body is not perfect, but no body is. There will always be something that I want to be different.

Acceptance:

I accept that this is the body I am in right now. And no matter how long I stare at it, it’s not going to change today.

Appreciation:

I appreciate what this body lets me do. Everything I do, every second of the day, I do because of this body.

You know what ya’ll… my thighs touch. They jiggle when I walk, they have cellulite, stretch marks and scars, and they have worn through every pair of pants I’ve ever owned. But my quadriceps and hamstrings LET me walk. They give me power to leap, stability to balance, and padding to roll around on the floor. And if I do say so myself, they are pretty dang strong.

There’s one more thing that makes this week special.

This week is also Transgender Awareness Week.

Being able to love your body is hard enough, but what if your body didn’t match your gender? According to a study done by GLSEN (the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network), 75% of transgender and non-binary youth feel unsafe in school and activities.

Dance has always been something that has made me feel safe, and the thought that it could be anything but that for someone else breaks my heart. So, this week when you are finding ways to celebrate your own body, don’t forget to help those around you to feel safe and loved in theirs.

Maybe take a few extra minutes to do this on Friday (Nov. 20th) Transgender Remembrance Day to honor those whose are no longer dancing with us.

In the resources page, you can find articles, research and links to help you love yourself and others!

Below are the links to NHSDA Love Your Body Week and the Trevor Projects Guide to Being a Trans Ally.

Aren’t our bodies amazing??

Keep Kinected,

Amelia

https://www.nhsda-ndeo.org/content.aspx?page_id=22&club_id=661544&module_id=270446

https://www.thetrevorproject.org/resources/trevor-support-center/a-guide-to-being-an-ally-to-transgender-and-nonbinary-youth/?fbclid=IwAR3aFRh1JWyRnzg72yhdZI3CNpf96CaOwI7NiOW8UMzKqN8WWbjfMkVK3uY


https://www.thetrevorproject.org/resources/trevor-support-center/a-guide-to-being-an-ally-to-transgender-and-nonbinary-youth/?fbclid=IwAR3aFRh1JWyRnzg72yhdZI3CNpf96CaOwI7NiOW8UMzKqN8WWbjfMkVK3uY

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