Practical Experience – Practice “Wellness Beats”

Practice “Wellness Beats” 

In Wellness Beats it is especially important to improve socialization, cooperation and a sense of belonging. Group interaction and eye contact is especially important in Wellness Beats. Choosing set-ups where the individuals are able to see one another (i.e., circle, square, facing lines – see Class Set-up) will help improve group interaction and dynamics.  Instructor may also choose to use different musical instruments such as maracas, jingle bells, tambourines. etc.


  • One Maraca or Egg Shaker or Tambourine, or other rattle-type percussive instrument
  • Angle Jingle Bells (or tie bells around your ankles)
  • Formation:  Circle
  • Music:  Drums Alive Kids Beats Vol. 2 – Deer Dance
  • Follow the Deer Dance with Maracas instructions.  (Further choreography notes can be found on the Kids Beats Vol. 2 CD Choreography Booklet).

The Deer Dance is a blessing and healing dance used by the Native Americans. It is a dance that is often used to bless particular items and promote unity within the group. The healing benefits are the same found in Music and Dance Therapy. The Deer Dance is still being practiced today.

Begin with the Circle formation (Class Set-up). A maraca is given to each person. This dance can be performed with a live drum or Native American music that has a strong beat. The group begins to dance clockwise in a large circle around the balls while shaking the maracas. The foot pattern is typical of Native American rhythms, with the accent on the downbeat.



Foot Pattern

Step hop right, Step hop left. Step hop right, Step hop left. The movements are grounded and performed low to the ground. It provides a feeling of being rooted in the earth. The arms and body are free to move as one feels.

Continue dancing around the room until someone hoots, “Hooo Hooo.” At that moment the group changes direction and begins dancing counter clockwise. There is no leader; the hooting happens spontaneously and can be done at any time by anyone in the group. The only rule is to change direction when someone hoots.

Please see Drums Alive® Kids Beats vol. 2 for music and choreography.