Why You Can't NOT Afford to Do THIS in Your Dance Classes
Recently I was talking with a teacher about the highs and lows of the job - the many challenges and the many rewards. She mentioned the disappointment at having lost a student not long ago because of the dancer feeling uncomfortable in her own skin; she had some body insecurities, and those feelings had led her to drop out of dance classes. We commiserated that it’s so hard to work on all the things with our students: technique, terminology, flexibility, progressions… getting it all done can feel impossible at times.
We agreed that incorporating body positivity with dancers is important, but again, there’s just so many things to bring to the studio and teaching day after day, it’s understandable to be overwhelmed by it all.
I get it. I’ve been teaching for over 12 years, at studios serving up to 250 students in the private sector and just 20 students in Parks + Rec programs. No matter the size of your studio or how many kids you teach, we educators wear a lot of hats and it is overwhelming to do it all and implement all the things we want to in our classes.
But I have a radical idea to propose. What if, instead of trying to do all the things in our dance classes, we focus on one thing. Not technique, or terminology, or choreography, but what if to teach dance we first teach dancers how to love and respect themselves?
Body love and acceptance for our dancers isn’t a side dish that we should serve supplemental to technique. It’s a vital, needs to be implemented NOW mindset shift. What if it’s the first thing we teach, secondary to even technique?
Why? Because we’re in the business of teaching dance safely and joyfully to young people, and because of the nature of dance (standing in front of a mirror all day, using our muscles and brains and spirits to convey movement and emotion), we HAVE to include conversations about bodies and mental health. If we want our students to bring every part of themselves to dance, we have to teach them how to love and respect all parts of themselves.
Bottom line: we dance teachers and studio owners can’t NOT afford to bring more body love and acceptance to our classes.
So I encourage you to shift your thinking from viewing body positivity, love, and respect as ‘woo’, or something ‘extra’ you’ll add to your classes later, when you have more time, to a gift that you can immediately give to your students that will allow them to be all they can be - body, mind, and spirit.
Not sure where to start? I hear you; getting started is the hardest part.
That’s why I created the Dance Studio BodyPosi Challenge. This 5 day Challenge gives you a step by step guide to bring more body love to your classes and studio culture starting now. It’s chock full of resources for all ages and levels and includes journal prompts, games, meditations, moving mantras (short movement exercises combined with affirmations), and support from me.
The Challenge runs March 25-29, so the time to get started is NOW!
Are you ready to focus on just one thing? Are you ready to take that one step forward that will boost your studio and teaching practice to the next level? I’m so ready for you! Get started by clicking the button below! And you can always e-mail me if you have questions.
You’re doing great work my friend, and I want to thank you for all you do for your dancers. I know this job isn’t an easy one, but you were meant to do this work. I’m here to cheer you on and push you forward. Well done. Keep going!