Dance puts new zing into Gail’s golden years

2009-08-26 00:00

“A HAPPY heart makes for happy feet” goes the story of Gail Stewart, who managed to dance her way to second position at the Masters In Line 2009 World Championship held in Blackpool, England, recently — despite suffering from emphysema and asthma.

Stewart, like most mothers, put her life on hold to raise her three children. She encouraged her twins, who were raised in Zimbabwe, to become champions in Latin American and ballroom dancing. She supported her three children in whatever they did.

The demands of motherhood led this professional musician to decide to put down her microphone for 30 years.

However, three-and-a-half years ago, she decided it was her turn to move to centre stage by taking up line dancing, albeit in her golden years.

“I love dancing because it keeps your brain going. It is a nice social place where you can make lots of friends. You are always busy,” said Stewart.

She added that the music especially excites her, as does learning all the new steps.

“Besides my husband, it has become my life.”

Stewart said dancing is in her genes. Her aunt was an SA ballroom dancing champion for five years and both her parents were dancers.

She said her youngest son still dances, while her granddaughter has also recently taken up the pastime.

In the last three years, Stewart has entered 10 championships and has been placed well in some.

She said dancing has been especially therapeutic since she suffers from emphysema and is a bad asthmatic.

“I don’t let it get me down. I have always been a happy person and lived for the present. I don’t dwell in the past. That is why I give all the glory to God.”

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