Before you start, here's what you'll need to know.



This course is designed to introduce you to the Suhaila Salimpour Format and give you a comprehensive introduction to belly dance movement, music, and culture. This course also serves as a refresher course for those returning after time away. 

To better prepare and help you become familiar with concepts and terminology, we recommend the following: 

  • Begin your journey by signing up for Online Classes at, focusing on taking three different classes of each of the following topics in the Suhaila Salimpour Format Level 1:  Singles3/4s, Pelvic LocksSquares, CirclesVertical Figure 8sHorizontal Figure 8sTwists.
  • Use the Level 1 Training Plans as a guide to help you navigate the above class rotation. 
  • Read the Training and Resources section to supplement your cultural understanding of belly dance movement, music, and history. Please take special note of the items in the “Required Reading, Listening, Viewing List”, and begin the readings right away.
  • Learn the patterns in the SL1 Finger Cymbal Pattern List. Begin working with Cymbal Jams and Playing Finger Cymbals with Jamila audio tools to get started. If you don’t already have a set of Suhaila Cymbals, we recommend you get them now; you will be happy you did!

Study the Salimpour Format Nomenclature. Practice reading and writing the Nomenclature to prepare for future assignments where this is required. Reading the Nomenclature out loud to yourself may help speed the process of committing the shorthand to memory.


Fundamentals 1 covers a lot of material in a short period of time, so we expect you to manage and plan your time so that you can complete the required coursework. 

The course is six weeks long, and the online classes, coursework, and assignments combined take an estimated 10 to 15 hours each week to complete.

Each assignment has a due date to keep you on track. To make sure you don’t fall behind, you’re expected to turn in these assignments on time

If you have any vacations, major business trips, or personal commitments within the course’s six-week timeline, this may significantly affect the your ability to turn in assignments on time.  You’ll be responsible for turning in assignments on time regardless of any travel or work schedule changes (planned or last minute).  Once you're enrolled, there are no refunds for withdrawing from the course. Find our payment policy here.

Use the Time & Priority Assessment Tool to help you determine the best use of your available time during this course, and to plan out a daily schedule.