How to walk like an Egyptian…

By Ishtar Dance on Monday, February, 19th, 2018 in Dance Coaching, Dance Inspiration, Learning, Your Dance Body 2 Comments

Love or hate the cheesy headline, the Hagalla, or Egyptian walk, is a must know move for any belly dancer. But because it can be really difficult to learn initially, I see a lot of dancers perform it either in the wrong posture (and therefore but unnecessary strain on their backs) or walk with what I would call a ‘bum-wobble’ instead of a hagalla.

Learning the basic Hagalla is like learning to walk all over again, and it takes lots of drilling, but also the right understanding of how the move is created, before you can truly master it. There are lots of fun and funky variations of this move, which I cover in the video on how to advance your hagalla (coming soon). But even if you’re a seasoned dancer, or even teacher, it’s useful to drill the basics, especially for the hagalla, as it can be broken down and taught in many different ways.

I therefore hope you’ll enjoy my video on the basic technique for the Egyptian Walk/Hagalla. The move is also sometimes referred to as the three-quarter shimmy, and although the technique for creating that is slightly different, the moves do look quite similar.

My best tip for learning (or teaching) the basic hagalla, would be to take it really slow to start with, and make sure you have music that suits the tempo you want to drill it at, increasing it slowly as you develop the move from lesson to lesson. It can also be really useful to do posture corrections/changes whilst drilling the move, to see whether you’re still keeping your back straight and strong throughout. Most people really don’t, and although there are variations where it looks like the back is arching out, this should only be attempted when you know exactly how to achieve this ‘look’, whilst keeping you back safe.

I hope you find this article and the video useful, so please leave me a comment below if you do, or have any suggestions or ideas you’d like to share when it comes to mastering the hagalla,

Happy and safe dancing – always 🙂


Did you miss my last post? Read it here:

2 responses to “How to walk like an Egyptian…”

  1. Soraya says:

    Great explanation, and breakdown of steps but lost with the music, too much in the background couldn’t really hear how the step works with the music beat.

    • Ishtar Dance says:

      Hi Soraya,

      Thanks for your feedback. Having watched the video back myself (several weeks after creating it) I fully understand what you mean. I will add a revised version of this video to my to-do-list and have just bought a great rhythms CD which I can use for this, and that should make it easier to hear how this works with the music. Glad you enjoyed the break down, and once again thank you for taking the time to leave your comment 🙂

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