From what I've seen most (orthodox) Jewish dancing consists of people running or walking in a circle, sometimes with exciting variations such as foot stomping. Are there any records of ancient (pre-hassidic) dances and do any communities practice them?

  • @CharlesKoppelman I was referring to the mitzvah tanz or the mezinka – user2110 Mar 11 '13 at 15:52
  • If there are any they would probably be related to Tu Be'Av (the 15th of Av). – Ariel Mar 12 '13 at 6:30
  • Tu Be'av....in that the women would dance in the fields. – andrewmh20 Mar 12 '13 at 22:29
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    Waving the Lulav? – Double AA Mar 26 '14 at 5:03
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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it is about jewish culture; not Judaism. – mevaqesh May 1 '17 at 1:05

The Mishna in Sukkah (5:4) describes the dancing in the Bet Hamikdash during the Simchat Bet haSho'eva. It is described as juggling torches of fire.

חֲסִידִים וְאַנְשֵׁי מַעֲשֶׂה הָיוּ מְרַקְּדִים לִפְנֵיהֶם בַּאֲבוּקוֹת שֶׁל אוֹר שֶׁבִּידֵיהֶן, וְאוֹמְרִים לִפְנֵיהֶן דִּבְרֵי שִׁירוֹת וְתִשְׁבָּחוֹת

The Gemara (Sukkah 53a) also mentions bowing down - Kida - which looked a lot like push-ups.

תניא אמרו עליו על רבן שמעון בן גמליאל כשהיה שמח שמחת בית השואבה היה נוטל שמנה אבוקות של אור וזורק אחת ונוטל אחת ואין נוגעות זו בזו וכשהוא משתחוה נועץ שני גודליו בארץ ושוחה ונושק את הרצפה וזוקף ואין כל בריה יכולה לעשות כן וזו היא קידה ‏

  • do you know what qida looks like? how do you know it "looked a lot like push-ups"? is being mishtahwo upon the floor and shoho kissing it, which is called qidho, dancing? what do any of these words mean? – MoriDowidhYa3aqov Apr 30 '17 at 13:53