Firstly, how on earth is it November already?! HOLY SMOKE!

So this past week I have been in Bedfordshire (Leighton Buzzard to be exact) on a intensive 5 day course with WDSAUK on their Level 2 Wheelchair Dance Instructor Course. I've wanted to take on the course ever since I started volunteering with WDSA back in March but timing was never great with my degree coming to a end and entering the scary big world! It was also the first time I had travelled along for a longer duration in a while so my obvious anxiety levels weren't on my side.

I have always wanted my own sessions to run, more so now I've started to run my own dance sessions with able-bodied young people as well as supporting sessions with young people who have disabilities. It's such a warming experience to be part of a young person's enjoyment in the arts and knowing your part of their development. 

So I spent 5 days learning how to dance in a wheelchair to Samba, Waltz, Quickstep and Group Dance. In 5 days we also came to grips with the medical chunk of working with people in wheelchairs, the safety of getting in and out of a wheelchair as well as dancing out of a wheelchair in partnership with someone who is in a wheelchair. It seemed and was a lot to get through in such a short space of time but I thoroughly enjoyed having the experience. 

 I became so aware of my own body and the bodies of those in wheelchairs, the daily thoughts they may have to encounter as they move around on a daily basis. I would even try to take the trip to the toilet in a wheelchair and think about how a disabled person would do this.

I found the week very challenging in terms of learning new dance techniques I haven't encountered before and having to really think about adaptation has such a massive part to play in Wheelchair Dance. 

I really hope once I have passed I can put a lot of plans into place, watch this space!

It was also so good to be working with two fellow WDSA Team Members, Emma and Kevin who kept me sain and laughing through the intensive 5 days!

Check out the small video I created using footage from Patricia Reilly (another participant) of the course and what is involved!

thanks for reading,