Salsa, sweat, socialize Comments Off on Salsa, sweat, socialize 4714

Traveling makes for a hectic lifestyle often moving from city to city, country to country rapidly. With such a capricious lifestyle, making friends and keeping up with exercise can be difficult. The answer to both of these problems is dancing salsa. Salsa is an activity that can remain permanently in an inconsistent lifestyle. The evidence can be observed in any salsa club. On the surface, the crowded dance floor seems just to be filled with dancers spinning, swaying, and sweating to the beat of the music, but below the surface, the salsa club is much more than just dancing. Pay attention more carefully and the most impressive elements surrounding salsa will become evident. Notice dancers sweating, laughing, learning, and socializing; these are the elements that make salsa special. Salsa is not just a dance that happens to be an insane workout, but most importantly, it is a community. A supportive community that can be found in just about any city in the world, making it the ideal exercise for the world traveler.

While salsa music and dancing is important to many Latin American countries in the Caribbean, its roots are in Cuba. Salsa is a relatively new music, developed in the 1900s, heavily influenced by Afro-Caribbean culture. Salsa has been brought to many countries since its creation and today, many countries have their own style of salsa. In Cuba there is Cuban and Casino style dancing; in Colombia, there is Caleño style; in Puerto Rico, there is, of course, Puertorriqueña salsa; and in the USA there is New York style also known as Mambo and LA style salsa, just to name a few.

With such a vast number of styles, salsa dancing is the perfect exercise to take-up for those who get bored with the mundane easily. There is always something new to learn, it’s impossible to get bored. The health benefits are not just physical, but also beneficial in achieving happiness and mental health. Step into any salsa club to witness the intensity of this full-body workout. Inside watch dancers spend four to five hours per night dancing non-stop. To be a salsa dancer is also to be apart of a community of people who are always learning and helping each other. This community is a great resource to newcomers as friends, teachers, and guides to the salsa community in that area.

Salsa culture has permeated society in hundreds of countries, making it the perfect activity for the solo traveler. While traveling alone has its benefits, it also has its downfalls. Traveling alone sometimes can be, well, lonely. Going out alone is often awkward or looked at as strange by society. On the contrary, going to the salsa club alone is quite normal. Since it can be difficult to find friends that dance or have the desire to learn to dance salsa, many dancers start out by going to the salsa clubs alone to improve their dancing. In fact, due to the nature of social dancing, it is often better to go out dancing salsa alone. It’s normal to dance with total strangers. Dancers change partners with each song, therefore meeting someone new with each dance, making this one of the most social and mobile exercises in the world.

With so many free lessons offered around the world, getting started is easy. Usually, each salsa club has a night where they offer free lessons geared towards beginners, hoping these beginners will stay for the remainder of the evening. These free lessons are a great way to meet people in the salsa community. Staying for a few dances can gain you access to the dancers that have details on the best free classes and which places are best to dance each day of the week. After one night of dancing, it’s common to leave with a list of new friends that are eager to help you navigate the salsa scene.

Finding the best places to dance in a new city requires some research. With a little bit of creative Googling, finding an article about where to dance in each city is usually pretty easy. Typically there is even a website or Facebook group dedicated to posting Latin dance events each night. Here is a short reference of places to dance around the world to get you started.

Los Angeles, USA – Monday nights at El Floridita Cuban Restaurant. Each Monday, you can find some the best salsa bands and some of the best dancing in the city. Monday nights here are famous in LA. On Monday nights, it’s not uncommon to see someone famous here, spotting guests such as Wilder Valderrama, Jennifer Lopez, and Amber Heard. Free lessons start around 8:00 pm. Get there before 10:00 pm to avoid the line.

Medellín, Colombia – Wednesday through Saturday at Son Havana. On a quiet corner, a few blocks from the party district of La 70, Son Havana is a hidden gem. This simple salsa bar has great dancing Wednesdays and Thursdays, and live bands Fridays and Saturdays when the crowd doubles in size and dancing gets very intimate. It’s easy to spend the night dancing here until 4:00 am.

Quito, Ecuador – Thursdays through Saturdays at Salsateca Lavoe. From the outside, Lavoe seems unwelcoming, but when you walk through the door everything changes. Lavoe is a large salsa club with a huge dance floor and many new dancers. Throughout the night there are impressive performances from local salsa and bachata teams. Remember Quito is in high altitude so take breaks and drink plenty of water.

Montpellier, France – Friday Nights at The O’liver Pub. While it may seem to be in the middle of nowhere, making it to The O’liver Pub is well worth it. The massive dance floor is full of friendly dancers of all levels. Free classes start at 8:00 pm.

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Getting your kids to read this summer Comments Off on Getting your kids to read this summer 64591

Summer means different things for different people. For twenty-year-old’s, it’s the time to work and party; for parents, it’s the time to hold neighborhood events and start saving up, and for kids, it’s the time to kick back and finally have some fun. School’s out! 😃 It’s that one time of the year when they can go to the beach and hang out with all their friends without worrying about some project or homework. For them, the entire summer is all about having fun, and as a parent, it’s your sacred duty to balance fun with continuing education. You might even be able to replace “fun” with something more rewarding – like reading!

Knowledge attained outside the classroom tends to stick around longer

You don’t want to be the “uncool” parent that forces your kid to do something school-related during the summer, but you don’t really have that much of choice, here’s why. The lessons that really stick with you long after you finish school are the ones that you learned when you didn’t really have to.

The knowledge that is acquired without some form of ultimatum or consequence always leaves a lasting impression. It also introduces you to a new side of knowledge that is not purely scholarly.

Reading is right for you regardless of what it is that you decide to read – obviously you will have to control your kids’ intake in your spare time. Reading strengthens the mind, and continual learning increases the speed at which you assimilate and process information. Just imagine the kind of impact a fantastic reading speed could have on your kid educational future. You could be adequately preparing them for a future in academia.

Exposure

The reward of “ruining” their obsessively fun summer will be some exposure to other subjects and topics that are unfamiliar to them. Recreational reading could be very instrumental in building up their overall personality. Plus, proper exposure ensures that they have enough information to make smarter and more informed decisions at a tender age.

It can teach them to research and ask questions

Summer reading could form the basis of a voracious reading habit that could beautifully complement their curiosity. It’s not every kid that thinks about something strange that eventually go on to investigate, summer reading could introduce them to the concept of research.

How to get your kids to read during the summer

It’s easy to talk about getting your kids to read during the summer, getting them to do it another issue entirely.

Kids can be especially stubborn or pigheaded when you are trying to force them to do what they simply have no interest in. The only way to have them do what you want the right way is to either introduce a reward system or trick them that it’s all their idea. Local library’s often offer summer reading lists per age group.

Reward system

Are you having a hard time getting your kid to do anything you want? Wait patiently, there is always something they’ll want, and you can use that to get what you want – in this case, it’s a healthy reading habit.

When they come to you with a ridiculous demand, you can propose a fair trade that will engage their mind and keep it focused on a book that you’ll recommend. You can even choose to deliver the reward after the completion of several books, that way, you are getting the most out of your deal.

You can also choose to limit or restrict play time, and the completion of a certain number of pages could be the requirement they must fulfill before they are allowed to play again.

Making them think it’s their idea

In my experience, people are always more motivated to complete a project that they believe to be totally theirs. When it’s your plan, you just tend to pay more attention to it, it’s like you want to prove something to yourself and others around you. Adults think this way, and so do kids. They can be pretty devoted to completing a book they just accidentally stumbled upon or saw you flip through.

Sometimes you don’t have to be so obvious or aggressive, you could give a rousing speech about reading and hand them a book that you know that they’ll enjoy and leave the rest to them.

The summertime doesn’t have to all about vacations and parties, it could also be an opportunity for your kid to develop a reasonably analytical mind.

Is your partner complaining about your snoring? You might have a problem. Comments Off on Is your partner complaining about your snoring? You might have a problem. 55019

Your partner might not have the heart to tell you, but your snoring sucks. They might tell you that it’s slight and cute and they don’t mind, but they are just trying not to hurt your feelings. I, on the other hand, have no such obligation. In truth, snoring isn’t as annoying and unbearable as I make it out to be. It might actually be “cute” but something has to be done about it nonetheless. It might be a sign of something more serious than just a mildly distasteful sleeping habit. So, is your snoring far more serious than you think, or am I just being hard?

Having sleep apnea isn’t necessarily a bad thing (ok technically it is). But it doesn’t always have to be life or death. You could see a doctor and try to get things sorted out before it’s too late. After all, sleep apnea deprives your entire body and brain of some much-needed oxygen.

An individual is said to have sleep apnea when they don’t get enough oxygen during sleep because their brain isn’t sending signals fast enough to the rest of the body. It doesn’t know to breathe in during sleep; or it could be caused when the muscles of the throat are relaxed which causes the pathways to narrow, so the body doesn’t get enough oxygen during sleep. There are three major types of apnea and although their causes vary, they pretty much cause similar problems down the road.

I’m not typing this long list of diseases to scare you, but they are some of the possible conditions that might result from prolonged sleep apnea.

Some of the diseases that can arise from sleep apnea are:

  • High blood pressure
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Liver problems
  • Sleep-deprived partners

Although the diseases on this list are scary and often life-threatening, they rarely happen in most cases. Like with most life-threatening diseases out there, early identification is what it’s all about.

Here are a few ways of identifying sleep apnea:

  • Loud snoring
  • Short moments when you stop breathing completely
  • Dry mouth in the morning
  • Falling asleep during the day
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability
  • Short attention span while awake

Note: Sleep apnea isn’t quite identical across the spectrum. Some people don’t even snore loudly at night. I know that this might sound confusing but things aren’t always as simple as they seem. You have to watch out for some of the other symptoms if you think that you might have sleep apnea. Your best bet is to just get yourself checked out whenever you can.

Now then, how exactly can we help ourselves when we find out that we have sleep apnea?

Although there are some home remedies and radical dietary alternatives, the safest solution is going with modern medicine. In-person sleep studies, surgeries, and even medications are all options that might be available to you. With that said, here are a few things easy ways to help with your sleep apnea.

Keep your weight under check

Although this symptom is particularly restricted to obstructive sleep apnea, it’s a great idea to adopt it nonetheless. It’ll look after you long after the sleep apnea has passed and it does come with some added physical advantages. It is well known that obesity has a lot of unsightly consequences, but what most people don’t know is that it can also be the cause of sleep apnea. Obesity blocks some of the essential pathways such as the nasal passages and this often results in sleep apnea.

Change your sleep position

It has been noted that certain sleeping postures actually help with your sleep apnea. Something as simple as sleeping on your side can greatly impact the overall frequency of your snores and gasps. Sleeping on your side makes it less likely for your tongue to obstruct your airway. Although not everyone is immediately relieved by this simple home remedy, it’s still quite memorable all things considered.

Quit smoking

In case you might not know, smoking can kill you eventually. They don’t only break down the cells in your lungs, they also increase inflammation and fluid retention in the throat which can cause sleep apnea.

Sleep regularly

I understand that gasping for breath in the middle of the night can be problematic but adequate sleep goes a long way in improving the quality of your sleep and your life span altogether.

Your partner’s sporadic sleep pattern might not be a result of his or her strange sleeping habits. It might be something more serious than that and you should always watch him or her when they are asleep. That is when you will really know if they are at risk.

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