Let’s face it, I don’t think anyone (other than the owners of Zoom) were “killing it” this past year. While 2020 might have been hard, set your sights high on 2021! Here are five of my best tips for dancers to ensure that this year will be your best yet!
Get a Dance Journal!
This is probably the best tip I can give you for improving your dancing quickly. Keep a journal in your dance bag at all times. After class, try writing down all the compliments and corrections given (even if they weren’t necessarily said to you). At the end of the week try to reread your notes from each day and notice the ones that were repeated the most. This will help you set new goals for the coming week by showing you the steps/skills you need to prioritize in order to grow as a dancer and impress your artistic staff. Let’s face it, there’s so much that a dancer has to think about even when it comes to executing the most basic of steps! You don’t want to overwhelm your by trying to fix everything at one time, so that’s why finding these clear goals is so important! Another way to utilize a notebook is by writing choreography! As a professional dancer, I’m often juggling at least four different pieces of choreography at one time. So writing down things like steps, counts, spacing after a rehearsal helps me recap what I’ve worked on and gives me something to review before the next rehearsal. So please do yourself a favor and get your own! Kate Spade Spiral Notebooks are my favorite because they are the perfect size to fit in my dance bag, have plenty of pages, and are super cute!
Clean Out Your Dance Bag!
Getting rid of clutter and reorganizing really helps the new year feel like a fresh start. Clean and clear out your dance bag! This will make it much easier to find exactly what you need and (let’s be honest) lessen the scent of horrible dancer feet! Plus, you’ll probably find a bounty full of hair pins. Sometimes it’s even best to get a whole new dance bag. You can find some great ones on Dance Supplies or Cloud & Victory. Or use this Kate Spade Yoga bag like me! My favorite feature is the bow in the front (obviously) because it’s not only cute but also unzips on either size so I can fit a roller or yoga mat!
Always be Prepared with the Right Supplies!
I’ve always found that being prepared brings so much peace of mind and being less stressed helps me dance better (especially during performance season!). Make it a goal to be the most prepared you possibly can be this coming year, that way if your tights rip, your ribbons come untucked, or your bun feels loose then you know that you have all that you need to fix it and not get flustered. So simple things like packing your dance bag the night before, having extra snacks, or sewing an extra pair of pointe shoes can go a long way. Also, I definitely suggest that you invest in the Covet Dancer Problems Kit from Dance Supplies. It’s filled with Boo Boo beads, Lip Balm, hair tips, safety pins, bandaids, and more, all in an small, easy to find zippered pouch. Plus, being seen as the dancer in your ballet company or school is NEVER a bad reputation to have!
Take Time for Your Body!
This category encompasses so many things! One big step to taking care of your body is rolling out your muscles. This is a big way to prevent injury, which is key to success! Try to do roll out at night to help you relax or do it during a long break in between rehearsals/classes. I recommend getting the Gaynor Minden Roller Kit, it comes with a travel roller, mini roller, small & large massage ball, and a micro mat. It ensures that whenever you are feeling tight and want to get those kinks out of your muscles that you have a roller to do so.Keep one at the studio and one at home and maybe even one in your car! Just head to Dance Supplies to get your kit.
Believe in Yourself!
This tip may sound cliche but it is truly the IMPORTANT thing to your success! As dancers, our constant want for perfection leads us to becoming overly harsh on ourselves. I want to challenge you this next year to really trust in your ability and technique. Do not be afraid to go in the front of the first group in center or raise your hand to demonstrate a combination. Building and showing confidence as a performer will help you get more comfortable on stage and will honestly help you get better roles in the future. Plus, it will make the ballet life (which is so hard) a lot more pleasant!
Ring in the New Year with a New You!
I hope that you apply some of these tips and make new goals for yourself this coming year.With the right mindset, truly so much is possible! Additionally, remind yourself that if you’ve made it through 2020 then you can basically make it through just about anything! Wishing you all the best and a Happy New Year!
Every Ballerina Needs to Take a Bow