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Lena Thieme, PT Teaches and Dances in Brazil

posted on: Feb 3rd, 2020 category:art, dance, community, news

Lena Thieme, a member of West Portland Physical Therapy Clinic’s dance rehabilitation team, has recently returned from Brazil where she was teaching, performing, and helping dancers dance more freely. While there, she was honored as a princess of Lambada in a ceremony celebrating influential women of Lambada. She also performed a contemporary solo depicting Yemanja, the Orixa goddess of the sea. Her mission in Brazil was to teach daily warm-up classes during the week of Brazouka Beach Festival in Porto Seguro, the birthplace of Lambada. Her classes aided the teachers and participants in preparing for and recovering from the physically demanding daily journeys of these types of partner dance events.

Dance congresses and festivals can consist of three days to two weeks of workshops from international instructors during the day, and social dance parties at night. Participants come from all around the world. Full participation at Brazouka Beach Festival takes place over seven days, including six-hour workshops each day (in addition to up to six hours per day of social dancing), and another couple of hours if participating in shows and competition. This amounted in up to 15 hours per day of rigorous dancing — and very little sleep. The dancers were grateful for Lena’s coaching and the classes she gave that helped them to learn how to take care of themselves during this physically demanding event, as well as future dance events.

Lena continued the same journey of implementing her physical therapy expertise at the Rio Zouk Congress. There she met with influential instructors, helping implement methods of injury prevention for themselves and their students, understanding typical patterns imbalance in this dance style, and how to address them.

Dancing does not need to be painful. It should be a positive experience that brings joy and happiness to oneself and others, no matter what the style or level. Lena is grateful to have had the opportunity to share this belief and mission in Brazil through these dance events. She is also grateful to have the opportunity to continue her work as a dancer and dance instructor, performing and inspiring others.

She has returned to WPPTC with renewed energy to help energize the dance rehabilitation program and help guide the clinic’s dance patients of all backgrounds through their unique dance journeys and helping them to move more freely.

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