Global Groove

By Chen Nan ( China Daily ) Updated: 2015-08-19 07:48:08


Global Groove

Both women and children take foreign dance lessons to stay fit and have fun.[Photo by Zou Hong/China Daily]

Western dances are increasingly slipping into Chinese fitness routines. Chen Nan gets a feel for the moves, once taboo in China.

Belly dancing. Pole dancing. Salsa. Foreign dance styles are twirling into China with nimble steps, especially as fitness routines. Li Yulin's family worried he wouldn't get a good job when he started learning "indecent" Latin dance as a boy.

Since 2005, Yulin Latin has opened 10 Beijing studios with more than 800 children as members.

Li says he fell in love with dances that originated in Latin America.

"The electric moves. The passionate music. My parents disapproved. I had to learn in secret."

Now, Li teaches the moves to children, ages 4 to 12. The yearly costs at Yulin Latin are from 5,000 ($781) to 8,000 yuan.

"Kids come because their parents consider it exercise, social development and fun," Li says.

"We start by teaching simple moves to Latin music. Girls especially love the colorful dresses and shoes. They're easily drawn to it."

He came to Beijing from Henan province in 2004 to work in a Latin dance bar.

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