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'Square dancing'

2013-12-25 14:27 China Daily Web Editor: Yao Lan

Guangchangwu, or "square dancing", is a good way of keeping fit. But when people in large numbers dance to loud music in squares or parks, they create a din that people in the neighborhoods find it painful to bear. Group dancing has becoming controversial because of the noise pollution it creates, says an article on gmw.cn. Excerpts:

Media outlets have reported a spate of confrontations between people practicing guangchangwu and neighborhood residents. A man irritated by the loud and throbbing dancing music even fired a shotgun into the air recently to scare away the dancers near his house.

In Hubei province, residents of a locality reportedly threw rubbish at people dancing in a square. Before that, a group of students in Hebei province organized a silent protest against people playing loud music by blocking the "stage" of the dancers in a square. The students said they needed a quiet atmosphere to study.

Moreover, the city of Guangzhou in Guangdong province is set to promulgate rules to regulate guangchangwu from next year by restricting the time, venues and the use of loudspeakers.

It is good to see the authorities trying to redress public grievances. But senior citizens' frantic love for guangchangwu reflects the dearth of avenues for people to maintain physical fitness and the few leisure activities they can indulge in.

Playing mahjong, watching TV, and practicing guangchangwu seem to be the only choices for most of the senior citizens. Since elderly people want company, they readily join guangchangwu troupes to socialize as well as to get some exercise.

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