Tips & Advice

9 Ways to Prepare for Back to Dance

Dusty Button, principal dancer at Boston Ballet. Photo by Mitchell Button.

Summer is almost over. But don’t cry…because summer coming to a close means dance is about to start back! Here, Dance Informa brings you nine ways to prepare for back-to-dance.

#1. Get your mind right.

Get out of Pokemon Go mode (I know…it’s tough), and start to mentally prepare for long nights at dance, long weekends in rehearsal, and long nights after dance doing homework.

#2. Relax in the time you have left.

Soak in the sun now, because in a few weeks, you’re going to be indoors at school and at dance. Soak in this down time by taking naps while you still can, and have sleepovers while you do not have an early morning alarm set.

#3. Start some light stretching.

Get with a group of friends and take a yoga class, or just stretch at someone’s house in a circle while talking about the upcoming dance year. Make sure to ease back into stretching, so as to not pull anything before dance even begins.

#4. Complete your summer academic work.

Seriously. Finish that book, or assignment, so you can focus on dance class once it’s time to get back in to dance mode. And while you’re at it…read a dance book, or two, to get some inspiration from the professionals.

#5. Review last year’s ups and downs in your mind.

This is important. You can talk with your parents, your dance peers, or just think about it by yourself, but really review and think about your previous year’s performances…your ups, your downs, when you were at your best and why, when you were not focused and why. All of these facts will be cues for this upcoming year so you’re more prepared for what your habits are when it comes to dance class and performing.

#6. Take new head/body shots for the year.

Who doesn’t love a photo shoot? It doesn’t have to be the most expensive photographer, or 100 edited photos, but having a new headshot at the beginning of each dance year is smart. You may need them for a scholarship entry at a competition/convention, or if you’re planning on submitting yourself for any professional work.

#7. Soak in advice and corrections from your summer intensives.

Were you really inspired by one teacher at your summer intensive? How can you apply what your summer intensive teachers have said to you the whole year? Think about it, and write it down so you remember that goal all year.

#8. Think about nutrition for the year.

Talk with your mom (or dad if he does the grocery shopping) about snacks that are healthy and filling, and ask if you could always have those in stock in your house. Also, try your best to avoid the fast food places near your studio for an easy dinner. Pack your lunch and dinner in the morning if you go straight to dance from school. Be prepared.

#9. Create a mood board.

Cut out magazine photos, print out Dance Informa articles, print words that inspire you, and create a dance mood board with inspiration for the year. That way you have a cute photo to take for a fun Instagram post, and if you ever need motivation during the dance year, you’ll just need to look at your mood board!

By Allison Gupton of Dance Informa.

Photo (top): Dusty Button, principal dancer at Boston Ballet. Photo by Mitchell Button.

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