Putting in the work at the studio is important, but so is training at home. From stretching even on non-dance days to learning choreography from new teachers, dance is more than just a class! For the dancers with big goals to the ones that can’t stop pointing their toes, we collected some small things you can incorporate into your daily routine to improve as a dancer at home.

Daily Stretching

As a dancer, you are often moving your body in ways that most people don’t. This is why it’s so important to take care of your muscles and make sure you are well stretched for when you dance. The more flexible you get, the easier things like leaps and splits will become for you. A good time of the day to stretch is after a shower, this is because when you shower your muscles loosen which makes them easier to stretch. Take 10 minutes, sit on the floor, and watch TikToks or stretch routine videos to make the time pass faster.

Work on Improv Skills

Part of being a dancer is learning choreography, but being able to just express your feelings through improvisation is fine too. Especially since improv is a big part of conventions and intensives. If you are unsure where to start, stand in front of a mirror so you can see what you are doing. Put on a song that inspires you and just start dancing. See what you can create! Improv may feel uncomfortable at first if you haven’t done it before, but with time it can be a great way to let your personality shine.

Keeping in Shape

Your strength is what allows you to defy gravity and rock it on the dance floor, so it’s important to keep those muscles working. You can target your dance muscles with yoga, heading to the gym, or even light workouts at home. These don’t have to be intense, long, hard workouts, they should be fun and light just to keep you active.

Observe Other Dancers

Constant growth in dance isn’t a solo activity. We can learn so much from other dancers. Watch videos on YouTube, shows like The Next Step that share dancer’s stories, and choreography videos to find inspiration. This is a great way to find new tricks you are interested in learning, how to make your movements flow, and more. You are never too good to stop learning and observing others!

Finding ways to practice inside and outside of the studio is a great way to stay consistent and even improve! Next time you have a free moment, see if you can add a little extra dance to your day.

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Trina Hannah is a graphic design major and dancer at Siena Heights University. She loves all things creative including photography, painting, and writing. Trina has a passion for helping other young women build up their self esteem and chase their dreams all while making a positive impact.