After dancing for about ten years now, I have three words of advice to anyone who is trying to improve their dancing skills:
- Practice balance at least twenty minutes a day. One of the best ways to do this is to stand in a pirouette position – and while on the ball of your foot, attempt to keep your eyes closed while holding the position for as long as possible. I’d say doing this is necessary to increase the amount of turns you are able to do without losing momentum/speed and losing your balance. To take it a step further, try doing the same thing, but on a balance half ball. This will multiply the amount of focus and core strength necessary to keep your balance. To go even one step further, try practicing your turns on a turnboard. The slick bottom of the board allows you to increase turns exponentially – once you get the hang of it. Since it’s so slick, it’s easy to lose your balance and have the board fly out from beneath your foot if you’re not careful. It’s happened to me a few times; the first time it happened it was not a good time.
- COUNT. Seriously, just count.
- Stop caring so much about what you look like. Don’t critique yourself so harshly in the mirror – and don’t constantly compare yourself to other dancers. Once you have the basics down, learn to trust yourself more. Trust that not just your mind, but also your body know what to do. Especially when you are doing improv. Sometimes it’s important not to overthink things and just go with the flow.