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All About Bharatanatyam Adavus!

The term “Adavu” refers to the basic step. In Bharatanatyam, Adavus teaches the ABCs of pure dancing (Nritta). Adavus are combined to form a dance sequence in Bharatanatyam, just as a combination of alphabets produces words and then sentences. The Adavu is a dance for beginners who wish to learn Bharatanatyam. 

Adavus, or steps, are the fundamental unit of Bharatanatyam. There are various types of adavus, and their naming varies depending on the style. Adavu is loosely translated as footwork, but it refers to every limb of the body that is coordinated in a specific style. The major limbs are the hands, legs, head, and so on.

There are approximately 65 adavus that involve a variety of movements. This would only turn off eager learners because he or they might believe that the adavus are too numerous to be easily grasped. Let us take a quick look at the various adavu positions that can be found in almost every adavu. Ucanji dance tutorial takes into consideration the rhythmic intricacies and teaches the dance form in a manner that everyone can learn the dance form with online dance class. 



The fundamental posture of Bharatanatyam is Ardhamandala. The performer assumes a half-sitting position with the knees turned sideways and the spine erects in this posture. It takes a long time to master this posture. The half-seated position is difficult and requires a lot of strength as well as consistent practice.

Points to consider with Ardha Mandala Posture

  • Straighten your back (bending or stooping can create a hunch effect).
  • Feet pointing in opposite directions and placed horizontally
  • Hands on the hips, firmly and neatly placed. Eyes straight.

In Bharatanatyam, it is the basic posture of the body in which the body is straight, legs slightly bent at the knees, and toes facing sideways, and the body should be straight neither too relaxed nor too firm.


This is a fully seated position, and it is possibly the most difficult to grasp and recreate. During the early stages, one is prone to tripping and losing balance. However, it gradually subsides. The eyes must be focused straight ahead, and the back must be erect.

  1. Hasta bhedas or Hand gestures

The adavus is considered incomplete without hands. These hand gestures add beauty to the adavus.

Hand movement can be divided into three categories.

Asamyuta Hastas is a single-handed gesture.

Two hands are used in Samyuta Hastas.

Decorative hand movements, or Nritta Hastas

Hands moments also play an equally important part during Bharatnatyam. It includes careful hands moments to the sides with a slight curve. Elbows to be erect and not droop.  With hands in the front of the chest. Elbows firm, eyes straight.

Learning Bharatanatyam Adavus demands discipline, devotion, and passion. It blends dance, music, theatre together and instills poise and self-improvisation. Learn from Ucanji online dance class. The platform recognizes skill learning as a medium to nurture both mind and soul. The platform teaches Bharatnatyam along with 11 other dance forms. The whole curriculum is designed to help with a person’s overall growth – emotional, mental, and physical – and not just enhance their dance skills.

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