Are you over pressured by exams, rehearsals and performances? trying to get the best out of yourself or your dancers? Remember it is important to rest as well as work hard –
There is often pressure to do as much as we can to become more proficient dancers but more is not always better. Are you aware of the difference between overload and overtraining or overwork? Overload is a positive training principle, which means gradually challenging the dancer so that they can develop the physical capacities to dance efficiently and effectively. Overwork or overtraining is a negative consequence of training schedules that are too full and demanding, coupled with lack of rest and recovery. It will actually result in the dancer’s performance becoming less effective. Yes, work hard but rest too!
Planning a balanced dance session…
Get the best results from your dance session by planning effectively and regularly evaluating your methods and strategies. Try to take into account your own and your dancers’ health and wellbeing as you plan – overfilling the session, repeating material too much or favouring specific movements or muscle actions in your choreographic choices can have a negative effect on bodies. Less can often be more, think quality over quantity.
Keep your outlook up to date……
CPD is a great way to refresh your knowledge. Personal research, further education and sharing your practice with other professionals helps you to stay ahead of the game and maintain your currency, benefitting both yourself and your dancers.
Think about the energy requirements that you need for the day and fuel up effectively. Try consuming complex carbohydrates for sustained energy, protein for effective recovery, and plenty of fruits and vegetables for overall well-being.
Also try to avoid sugary snacks and energy drinks which will provide sugar rushes, particularly in the evening as these can prevent you from gaining a good nights sleep.
Today’s Top Tip is from Charlotte Tomlinson, SiDI Associate and Registered Provider.
In the mood for dancing?…
Our mood, state of mind and particularly stress levels can all contribute to susceptibility to injury by affecting our ability to concentrate on dancing with correct technique and execution.
Try to focus your attention while working, avoid unimportant distractions and take regular breaks to relax.
Today’s Top Tip is from SiDI co-founder Sonia Rafferty.
Sonia is a dance scientist, teacher, performer and choreographer, and co-author of Safe Dance Practice an Applied Dance Science Perspective, our core text.
She has been a member of the Dance Faculty at TrinityLaban since 1990 and is now a Senior Lecturer, teaching dance technique, performance, choreography and dance health and wellbeing, so she has a wealth of knowledge when it comes to useful tips.
Relax and get a good nights sleep
A dance artists life can be hectic! Try to take some time out to relax and allow both mind and body some effective recovery time.
This can be done by relaxing in a warm bath, or by using simple meditation techniques such as sitting or laying down and observing the breath. Doing this in the evening can help in gaining that all important good nights sleep.
Today’s Top Tip is from Charlotte Tomlinson, Associate, SiDI provider and reviewer.
Teachers and choreographers warm up…..
Don’t forget to do your own warm-up and cool down before and after you lead a session to protect your own body. This is often the last thing we have time for but paying attention to your own preparation and recovery will help you to keep your body healthy, balanced and available for work!
Today’s Top Tip is from Sonia Rafferty, joint founder of SiDI and co author of Safe Dance Practice book.
Wearing socks in the dance studio might not be a good idea…
The interaction of dance footwear with the floor is important: the sole of the shoe and the surface of the floor need to complement one another to avoid injury.
Similarly, working barefoot needs to have a sympathetic floor. Although many dancers love wearing socks for comfort and often think wearing them allows better technical work through the feet, it’s best not to always rely on socks. A large number of dancers regularly practicing in socks, will effectively polish the dance floor surface, resulting in slippery patches.
There is also an increased risk of tripping and slipping when wearing socks as they affect the amount of traction gained from the floor.
Ideally, the use of socks for everyday practice should be avoided, especially for inexperienced dancers and beginners.
Start your day the right way….
Make sure you start your day hydrated by drinking a glass of water when you wake up in the morning. Being hydrated can make you feel more alert and energised and reduce potential injury risk from fatigue.
Don’t forget a good breakfast too so that both mind and body can be ready for the day ahead!
Today’s Top Tip came from our Provider, Reviewer and Associate Charlotte Tomlinson.
Remember in this cold weather the temperature in your dance studio is important so that your dancers do their best.
To make sure that dancers can work efficiently and safely, the temperature of a dance studio should be around 18° to 24° degrees Celsius. An ideal temperature would be around 20°-21° degrees Celsius. This will help dancers to avoid either overheating or not being able to warm-up and stay warm efficiently, both of which can contribute to ill effects and injury.
Make sure that all your dancers keep their warm up clothes on longer in this cold weather so that muscles can be fully warm.