Socially and Spatially Aware

It makes sense that dance would teach spacial awareness. Teachers help dancers understand their bodies and the relationship it has to the space around them. We help create the brain-body connections regarding directional movement and teach formations and transitions in relation to the other dancers around you. These are helpful physical lessons, but how can this help them in school or with friends?

Don’t we all get a little bit anxious when someone enters our “bubble?” Some people are “huggers,” but, by and large, the majority of our American population does not want someone else entering their space uninvited. Being spatially aware in the dance classroom hannah liftstarts to help dancers develop their understanding of their own space vs. someone else’s space. You need room to move, and you must respect the dancers around you so you do not get run over or hit someone in the face.

As dancers mature they may often be asked to do movement that does involve entering another dancer’s space, be it by physical touch or by closeness in formation, but then they are learning to do it respectfully and with trust. Physical interaction with friends is a huge social lesson that many people, from childhood all the way through adulthood, struggle to understand boundaries for. Dancers seem to have a good foundation for appropriate spatial and social awareness, and this comes from the lessons learned in the classroom. Interested in starting your dance journey? Click here to download a free trial coupon. 

Posture and Being “Put-Together”

My sweet husband always compliments me on how well I put myself together. Those dancers and moms who see me at the studio every day may not agree… but when necessary, believe it or not, I can pull together my hair, make up, clothing and accessories pretty well.

I don’t take a lot of stock in appearance. We all know that appearances can be deceiving. HOWEVER. The way that you present yourself absolutely matters in this world. If 2 make upcandidates walk into a job interview and one is very well “put-together” and the other is not, first impressions alone will give the one who took more care in how they presented themselves an edge from the get go. Shoulders back, eyes up, and a confident smile can go a very long way in how you are perceived. This is something that we teach our dancers, subtly, as they grow in their dance careers. You have a uniform for Ballet: pink tights without rips or tears, a black leotard, hair in a bun, shoes on your feet. Not only does this help the instructor see their lines to teach correct form, but it starts to help our students understand that it matters to “dress for success.” Stage make up, costumes, earrings, hair are all part of the dance experience, and many of our dancers are doing their own hair and stage make up, pretty well, I might add, by the time they are 11 or 12.

While it is, admittedly, one of the less “deep” topics that dance taught me as I matured, I appreciate it very much nonetheless. I like being able to “put myself together” with confidence. It has helped me get jobs, meet potential mates, be taken seriously in business meetings. etc. Interested in starting the dance journey? Click here to download a free trial coupon. 

 

The Discipline of Daily Repetition

Almost any studio that mirrors ours in mission or offerings will tell you that Ballet is a great foundation for movement. That, even for hip hop, it helps make amazing brain-body connections, increases strength and builds an appreciation for discipline. The work that you put in at the barre affects every other part of your dance ability. This is something we drill into our dancers who take multiple styles from a very early age, no matter how “boring” or repetitive they may think ballet can be.

My favorite part of a Ballet class is the rhythm. Walk into ANY Ballet class at any level and the dancers will always start with tendus and plies at the barre. Even professional ballerinas start with similar combinations to beginner ballerinas to warm up joints and muscles and prepare their bodies for class. There is discipline involved in repeating the same exercises for years and years and finding ways to appreciate them and improve them over time.

Life is like this. There are daily tasks and responsibilities that we must do each and every day, no matter how repetitive they get. The trick is finding your rhythm and appreciating the work.

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