Katy Bowman and the Biomechanics of Human Growth: Barefoot Babies

Katy Bowman is a professional dancer from California. She was born in 1982. She started her dancing career at age 4 and became famous when she won the talent show “America’s Next Top Model” (ATMP). At that time she had a very successful modeling career until 2011 when she suffered a series of injuries which led to her having to stop performing altogether. Since then, she has been working as an instructor and motivational speaker. She is currently living in Los Angeles with her husband and their two children.

Bowman’s Career Highlights:

• Winner of America’s Next Top Model (ATMP) Talent Show in 2005

• Won the American Dance Festival (ADF) Talent Show in 2006, 2007 & 2008

• Won the Dancing With The Stars (DWS) Talent Show in 2009, 2010 & 2012; was eliminated in 2013 due to injury.

• Won the World Dance Championships (WDC) Talent Show in 2014; was eliminated in 2015 due to injury.

• Won the Dancesport International Talent Competition (DIPC) Talent Show in 2016; was eliminated in 2017 due to injury.

Over the course of her career, Bowman has been a professional performer on five shows on four different channels, respectively. She has also been a judge for three shows on three different channels, respectively.

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The majority of her performances have been in the musical genres of hip hop, modern and tap dance. Her most successful show has been Dancing With The Stars which has been running for over thirteen years now and turned her into a household name.

She has also had moderate success in the hip hop dance movie genre and even did well as a contestant on the reality talent show, America’s Next Top Model.

The various shows she has taken part in have won a combined thirty-four Emmys, twenty-two Golden Globes and fifty-seven Kids’ Choice Awards. The most notable of her wins include six Kids’ Choice Awards, four American Music Awards, three MTV Movie Awards, two Primetime Emmy Awards and one Academy Award.

She has been nominated a total of forty-seven times and has won twenty-six of those nominations.

Who knew that a child who grew up in the quiet town of Appleton, Minnesota would one day become the most successful dancer of all time?

Her love for dancing started at a young age and only grew as she got older. In the beginning, she mostly danced for fun and to express herself. As she got older, however, she realized that she had real talent and could possibly make a career out of it.

She started her dance career at age four when she joined her local dance school. Her instructor there was very impressed by her ability and predicted that she would one day become a professional dancer if she worked really hard.

She took these words to heart and as a result, she worked really hard.

In addition to attending dance school, she would practice at home for hours on end as well. While most little girls were playing with dolls or horses, she was practicing dance steps and routines.

She would often spend entire days at her dance school, only returning home when it got too dark outside.

As she got older, she started to compete in dance competitions. She competed locally at first and then moved on to bigger competitions.

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Her hard work and determination paid off as she won most of these competitions. With each competition, her fame grew and sponsors came calling.

By the time she was fifteen, she had become a professional dancer and was in great demand. She traveled the world taking part in shows and competitions.

As her fame increased, she started getting offers to appear on TV. She appeared on many different shows, performing everything from ballroom dances to break dancing. Her big break, however, was when she was offered the role of Bonnie in the dance movie, Footloose. The movie was a major success and made her a star.

At this point in her life, she had become one of the most popular dancers in the world. Her dance school still existed, but she had enough money that she no longer needed to teach classes.

She came back to the school occasionally, almost always to teach a private class. When she wasn’t teaching or taking part in competitions, she was flying from one city to another for various dance-oriented TV shows and appearances.

At age twenty-two, she was in a serious car crash that left her in a coma for nearly six months. It took her nearly a year of physical therapy to walk again.

At one point, her doctors didn’t think she would recover at all. This near death experience caused her to reevaluate her life and she decided that she needed to quit dance and focus on something else. She enrolled in college and received her degree in Education. She used this degree to become a high school English teacher at Appleton High School, the same school she had graduated from many years ago.

She continued to stay in touch with her high school friends and was a frequent visitor to the annual class reunions.

Her story could have ended there, but dance has a way of pulling you back in. Her popularity in the dance world never went away and her fan base only increased as the years went by.

She continued doing occasional dance performances and instructor jobs and even published several books on dancing.

At age thirty-two, she had experienced a great deal of success and fame. It was at that point that she decided to make one last album before officially retiring from the dance world.

The making of this album was not an easy process. She was no longer young and could not match the physical exertion that dancing required without great pain. She refused to take painkillers or other drugs to dull the pain. Instead, she stuck to her exercise routine as best she could. She would often have to take breaks while the band continued to record the song. Eventually the album was finished and she decided that she could no longer go on like this.

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The final show would be an open air concert in Paris, France. Tickets were nearly impossible to get, but being who she was, she managed to get several seats for the people closest to her.

On the day of the concert, the weather was extremely hot and there was a thunderstorm approaching. She refused to cancel the show because of this and said that heaven cannot rain on her parade.

As she took the stage to thunderous applause, the storm got worse and soon it was too dangerous to proceed. The power went out and a bolt of lightning struck not far from the stage. The organizers decided that the show could not go on and everyone was ordered to evacuate.

As the audience left, they didn’t realize that Tanya never left the stage. She was hit by another bolt of lightning and her body was burnt severely.

She died less than a minute later. All attempts to revive her failed.

At her funeral, her friends and family mourned the loss of a wonderful woman who had inspired so many people. Her tombstone bears the words “Dedicated Teacher” along with her name and birth and death dates.

Tanya’s Dance Frenzy album still sells very well to this day and is classic for anyone who is a fan of pop music.

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Sources & references used in this article:

Every Woman’s Guide to Foot Pain Relief: The New Science of Healthy Feet by K Bowman – 2011 – books.google.com

Balanced and barefoot: How unrestricted outdoor play makes for strong, confident, and capable children by AJ Hanscom – 2016 – books.google.com

… Origined: An intersectional feminist study of notions of the natural, the healthy and the Palaeolithic past in the popular science imaginary of biomechanics by Å Johansson – 2015 – diva-portal.org

Intersection of brain development and paediatric diffuse midline gliomas: potential role of microenvironment in tumour growth by KF Loveson, HL Fillmore – Brain sciences, 2018 – mdpi.com

Study of impact tolerance through free-fall investigation by RG Snyder, DR Foust, BM Bowman – 1977 – Citeseer

The Movement movement by W McNeill – Journal of Bodywork and Movement …, 2017 – bodyworkmovementtherapies.com

Factors Related to Achilles Tendon Mechanical Properties and Loading During Locomotion in Growing Youth: Implications for Biomechanically Based … by JM Neugebauer – 2011 – search.proquest.com