Excerpted from: http://www.angusmackenziedancestudios.com
As was traditional of the old kings of Scotland, Highland dancing was used to choose the best men for their men at arms. These dances tested the culminate of warrior skills including accuracy, agility and stamina. Prospects danced upon a small round shield (called a Targe) and they learned quickly to move with dexterity as a false step would land them upon the spike in the middle. The dance is said to have been inspired by the capers of the stag – the dancers upraised arms representing the animal’s antlers. Danced vigorously and exultantly, it is now highly stylized and calls for the greatest skill in technique and exactness of timing.
Tradition suggests a Celtic prince, Ghillie Callum, was a hero of mortal combat against one of MacBeth’s Chiefs at the Battle of Dunsinane in 1054. He is said to have crossed his own bloody claymore with the sword of the defeated Chief and danced over them both in exultation. This dance of exultation became a tradition among the highland warriors. It is believed that to complete the dance without touching the sword is a good omen and indicative of a successful battle.
Sounds like good dances from survivor warriors!