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School of Rak

Rak Your Body, Rak Your World!

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What is the School of Rak?

The School of Rak was founded in 2015 by Amira Hamzar for the purpose to educate, entertain and inspire. 

Group classes or one-on-one training are available in-person and online.

Training goes beyond the ancient art of dance and also encompass the well-being of the Mind, Heart, Body, and Spirit. 

The School of Rak sponsors annual educational events in Traverse City, MI, including World Bellydance Day and RAKtoberFest.


The School of Rak's Mission, Vision & Values

The School of Rak was founded by Amira Hamzar based on her belief that within each of us is a Rak Star waiting to make a starburst.  Amira is strongly committed to cultivating self-esteem, discipline, respect, empowerment, and enlightenment in her students through the healing power of dance.  Amira encourages those from all walks-of-life to enhance the well-being of their Mind, Heart, Body and Spirit; creating success in all aspects of life.  


The School of Rak syllabus was developed on a natural progression of stages of a dancer’s development.  This allows a beginner to progress through Rak-Solid technique at a rate to which the student can seamlessly and readily improve.  Amira believes in using anatomy, geometry, and trajectory as fundamental parts of the curriculum.


Amira continuously attend workshops to refine her teaching knowledge and her goal is to give each dancer the tools that they need to take dance as far as they dream. 


The School of Rak values:

  • Creativity

  • Diversity

  • Excellence

  • Outreach

  • Responsibility

  • Teamwork

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The School of Rak's Bellydance Classes

Beginner Classes:

While first learning Bellydance, the movements might be challenging because they are new to your body.  You may struggle with things like basic movements, posture, and breathing; as well as trying to put them together at the same time.  Keep in mind that while these moves are ancient, they are new to you!  Think of the moves as something to work towards.  You will not master them overnight!  Do what you can while enjoying the process.  It takes time to change anything, including new habits.  And keep in mind that each day is different, so do what you can today and listen to your body.

After almost 20 years of personal study, Amira has designed a training program to teach you the fundamental movements of Bellydance.  This will give you the skills to further advance your dance because with strong basic technique, you will continue to grow, so long as you continue to work at it.  The basic moves and principles are a great starting point and will make your dancing easier, more beautiful and safer.  You will build a strong foundation in the many different ways to move your body from your head to your toes!  And you can keep your arms out to the side until you are comfortable adding the various arm positions.   

Amira also provides reminders about your posture, weight placement, breathing and form throughout each technique lesson.  This will help you do the best that you can and you can take it up to the next level when you are ready!


Intermediate-Advanced Classes:

After learning the basics and delving more deeply into this ancient art form, you begin to realize how much you don’t know.  Not only are there many different dance movements, but there are also the various styles, not to mention the culture and history that accompanies them.

This can be overwhelming and you might not know what to focus on next.  When not knowing what the next step is, you might feel stuck in one spot.  This can result in working on nothing at all and making no progression whatsoever.

There are more variations than you can probably imagine.  Amira will teach you:

  • Change the angle  of a movement

  • Adding arm placements

  • Going into or coming out of a pose

  • Turning or traveling with a movement

  • Moving through space and traversing the floor

  • Transitioning from one movement or step to the next

  • Make a move smooth or sharp

  • Pushing and pulling your energy

  • Focus of the eyes 

  • Emoting

  • Level changes and Floor-work

  • Layering movements

  • Timing and tempo

  • Weighted versus un-weighted movements

  • Muscular versus Skeletal movements

Amira will also cover:

  • Stylization for various Bellydance styles like Folkloric, American Cabaret, Classical Tribal and Tribal Fusion

  • Global variations for Bellydance fusions including Hip-Hop, Indian, Latin, Polynesian, and African

  • Props like the Veil, Cane and Sword

  • Rhythms and Finger Cymbal patterns

  • Musicality

  • Improvisation

  • Stage Presence 

In each lesson, we will begin from the ground up.  This means that Amira will teach you the footwork, and then add the movements. 

And remember; the more you practice, the more you can add the challenging levels!


Amira will help you get out of your head and into moving your body.

She will take you through the movements, from basic to beyond.  Amira will be with you every step of the way; from culture to choreography, from technique to theory, and from history to health.

When you take her class, whether in-person or online, she gives you the tools to create a consistent dance practice.  


Benefits of Bellydance

Bellydance is more than another way to move your body.  It has both physical and emotional benefits:

  • Builds memory

  • An outlet for creative expression

  • Builds social skills

  • Creates a greater sense of well-being

  • Reduces stress

  • Enhances discipline

  • Diminishes depression

  • Increases emotional maturity

  • Increased mind-body coordination

  • Increased sense of rhythm 

Everyone is a Rak Star!  Recognize, celebrate, nurture, and release the Rak Star within you.  With Bellydance, you will:

  • Let go of the chatter in your head

  • Build endurance and stamina

  • Build confidence and self-esteem

  • Increase flexibility

  • Improve posture

  • Increase blood flow and circulation

  • Increase cardiovascular capacity and endurance

  • Lubricate and loosen the joints and spine

  • Massage and stimulate the internal organs

  • Strengthen the digestive system

  • Strengthen your muscles while keeping your feminine curves

  • Feel fit, free, and alive

  • Feel sensual, sexy and powerful

  • Feel graceful, feminine and strong

  • Find joy and the energy

  • Increase flexibility, strength and stamina.


Make time for yourself.  This is your time to relax, to get a workout, and to leave the world of the ordinary.

Think about all of the boring things that other people are doing and this is what you chose to do with your day.

So, tie a scarf around your hips; its time to start something new!