Artiste Saroja Vaidyanathan considers Bharatanatyam a holistic affair
I believe yoga is a health mantra which keeps us fit with body, mind and soul in alignment. Meditation and puja are other ways to stay fit and healthy. Besides all this one should concentrate on work, so that the mind is always occupied, which means that stress and tension are away.
Usually my day starts with a cup of coffee. Around 8 a.m. I take a glass of fruit juice, be it apple, peach or any other fruit juice. Dry fruits are a must. They are concentrated packages of high nutrition rich in fibre, potassium, and other nutrients. I never forget to take them.
Bharatanatyam is no doubt a good exercise. This great art of dancing helps us in developing awareness and acquiring sensitivity, strength, courage, skill, cooperation, health, happiness, well-being and peace of mind. If a person performs it regularly for an hour a day it is the best exercise a person can do to stay fit and fine. It teaches one how to express emotions. One does a lot of jumping, hopping, so it helps develop balance. In a way it is like a multi-tasking exercise and taking breaks in between would defeat the purpose. If you take a break after 15 minutes or eat something in between then it would not be of as much help as when done for an hour at a stretch.
As a Bharatanatyam dancer one needs to take care of the knees and do some extra exercise. Daily exercise for 20-25 minutes is a must. The dancing in Bharatanatyam is dependent on the knees and hand movements.
(As told to Sara Nasir)