Getting back to dance after time away can be tough! Keep these things in mind to help you stick to your dance schedule, feel confident, and prevent injury.
1. Remember, having a dancer’s body means that you have a body, and you dance.
Dancers are all ages, skill levels, sizes, gender expressions, and ethnicities. ❤️🧡💛💚💙💜🖤 Set skill-based goals for yourself, like: “I want to develop my sense of rhythm,” “I want to increase my stamina,” “I want to pick up choreography faster,” or “I want to be able to execute a triple pirouette.”
2. The more you move, the easier it will be!
After being away for a while, your body might feel stiff and slow or even like cement. That’s completely normal! Don’t forget to be kind to yourself. Things will come back. Your flexibility and agility will return as you get back into a regular dance schedule.
You should always stay hydrated, but most especially when you’re coming back to dance class. When in doubt, follow the 8×8 rule: Drink eight 8oz glasses of water per day.
4. Eat nutrient-dense foods to help prevent and alleviate muscle cramps.
Prevent muscle cramps by eating foods that are rich in potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sodium (also known as electrolytes).
5. Stretch it out!
Take care of your muscles by gently stretching before/after class to help prevent injuries.
Calf lunges are a great way to gently warm-up/down.
Hang your heels off a step and slowly rise onto relevé and then lower. Try them on one leg (shown above) for an extra challenge!
Lunges for your hip flexors
Adho Mukha Śvānāsana (Commonly known as Downward Dog)
6. Take a hot bath.
Hot baths, particularly Epsom salt baths, are a great way to soothe sore joints & muscles after class.
7. Rollers are a dancer’s best friend.
We cannot recommend it enough. Foam rollers and tennis/lacrosse balls are excellent at helping alleviate tension. Learn how to roll out muscle tension with a tennis/lacrosse ball or a foam roller at those links!
8. Take care of your sore muscles.
That sore muscle feeling you get one to three days after a challenging class is called delayed onset muscle soreness (or DOMS). There are a few ways you can tackle or combat that! Have some anti-inflammatories (Naproxen, Ibuprofen, Aspirin) on hand. Muscle salves like Tiger Balm and Icy Hot can help as well! For more intense soreness, particularly if you feel as if something might have been strained or overworked, icing the muscle (20 minutes on, 20 minutes off) with a paper or fabric towel between the icing agent and your skin can help. Kinesiology tape (like KT Tape, Rocktape, Kinesio Tex Tape, etc.) is also a great aid in supporting a strained muscle while it recovers.
9. Get your beauty rest!
Make sure you are getting a full night’s sleep before and after class, so your body and mind can rest and recover.
10. Keep dancing!
Schedule your next class if you haven’t already so that you re-build your dance habit! 💪
Need some more advice?
Reach out to our staff; we can help!
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