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Katikrama – Movements Of Waist In Indian Classical Dance

Katikrama is the movements (karma) of the waist (kati) in classical dance. The movements of the waist form a part of the four isolated movements of neck, hand, waist, and foot (recaka s) and are known as kati recka. Movements of these parts of the body add beauty and style to the graceful movement of the limbs. Recka-s also act as transitory movements that fill a pause between two or more body positions.

In kati recaka, the trika (sacrum) is raised while the waist rotates and is drawn back. The ancient Indian text on dramaturgy and histrionics, Natyashastra, mentions five kinds of waist movements used by dancers in classical dance dramas.

They are –

Chinna – The middle portion of the waist is turned aside. This movement is used when a character is in hurry or looking around. It is also used in a body preparation exercise.

Nivritta – The waist is moved to face the front from the reverse position. It is used by characters turning around in search of something or someone.

Recita – The waist is moved in different directions and is used by a character who is weary or drunk.

Prakampita – The waist is moved in an oblique manner, upwards and downwards. The character enacting a vertically challenged person, or hunchback, uses this movement.

Udhvahita – Both sides of the waist are raised upwards in a slow and gentle motion. This is used by a seductive person attempting to attract another through amorous gestures.